The true story of a young journalist who fell from grace when it was found he had fabricated over half of his articles.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Lewis Estridge
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Catarina Bannier
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David Bach
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Aaron Bluth
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Rob Gruen
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Linda Smith ...
Gloria (as Linda E. Smith)
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Marty Peretz
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Storyline

This film tells the true story of fraudulent Washington, D.C. journalist Stephen Glass (Christensen), who rose to meteoric heights as a young writer in his 20s, becoming a staff writer at "The New Republic" for three years (1995-1998), where 27 of his 41 published stories were either partially or completely made up. Looking for a short cut to fame, Glass concocted sources, quotes and even entire stories, but his deception did not go unnoticed forever, and eventually, his world came crumbling down... Written by Kaliya Warner

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Read between the lies. See more »

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Drama | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, sexual references and brief drug use | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

26 November 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A hazugsággyáros  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$77,540 (USA) (31 October 2003)

Gross:

£46,921 (UK) (14 May 2004)
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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Hanna Rosin, a real life journalist who was a colleague of both Stephen Glass and Charles Lane, worked as an adviser to writer/director Billy Ray. The character of Catlin Avery was based loosely on Hanna Rosin. See more »

Goofs

When Stephen Glass and Michael Kelly talk about Glass's predicament, and Kelly asks Glass if he ever cooked a story when he was the New Republic's editor-in-chief, the discussion occurs at Kelly's current place of work. In the DVD commentary, director Billy Ray said that the conversation actually took place at Mike Kelly's house, and that Glass's girlfriend was present. See more »

Quotes

Andy Fox: The New Republic, snobbiest rag in the business, the in-flight magazine of Air Force One... and their star goes out and gets completely snowed by a bunch of hackers. I mean, God couldn't have written this any better.
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Soundtracks

Blitzkrieg Bop
(1976)
Written by Dee Dee Ramone (as Douglas Colvin) and Tommy Ramone (as Thomas Erdelyi); also credited Joey Ramone (as Jeffrey Hyman), Johnny Ramone (as John Cummings)
Performed by The Ramones
Published by WB Music Corp. obo Itself and Taco Tunes, Inc. (ASCAP)
Courtesy of Sire Records
By Arrangement with Warner Strategic Marketing
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User Reviews

An unspectacular but enjoyable little drama
16 May 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The New Republic is one of many political comment magazines published out of Washington DC. The writing/editing staff is small and young and includes the humble and friendly Stephen Glass. His stories are often very interesting and outrageous and he starts to attract attention from other magazines for contributions. When writes about an on-line hacker who attacked the website of a large software company he attracts the attention of an internet-based journal and writer Adam Penenberg who gets attacked by his editor for missing the story. However, as Penenberg starts to look at the facts behind the story he starts to suspect that the story is one large fabrication.

I only vaguely remember the original breaking of this story and am not aware of the full facts behind the story but I was interested enough to go and see this film when it was released at the weekend. The film opens with Glass giving a talk to a class back at his old school where he learnt his trade, this is then used as a tool to give background on both him and the job he does. This works pretty well even if it is a little confusing as to when it is happening (a fact not understood until the end). The main thrust of the film is the gradual exposure of the lies that Glass has been perpetrated within his stories. In this regard it works pretty well as a drama with a good story – made all the more interesting and engaging by being true. It never really ignites into being a thriller and it misses a few opportunities to really be gripping but it still performs well as a good solid film – perhaps it was a decision not to stick in more shouting or acting fireworks, it was the right decision but I'm sure some audiences will expect shouting and fireworks.

The one moment I did feel that the film missed out was where Chuck picks several editions off the shelf and starts to realize the extent of the lies that they have been publishing: that scene wasn't dramatic and it wasn't convincing, that should have been a lot more dramatic – but this is only one scene in the whole film. Like I said, some people will find this film a bit slow and lacking in pace but for me it was the story that drove the film as opposed to theatrical tricks. The cast help the film a great deal, even if many of them are barely more than cameos. Christensen's performance worried me at the start because it seemed to be a bit cheesy but after 15 minutes I realized that this was the point. His Glass is manipulative and deceitful to the point where it is an act that he delivers naturally – it was a difficult character to do and, despite him not being showy, he gets it bang on and he delivers the same character throughout while just allowing the audience's perception of him to change. Sarsgaard actually turns out to have the lion's share of the film and he gets the showiest moments of shouting – he is good and acts as our eyes. Sevingy is a real good actress and does well with her few scenes. The rest of the cast is well padded with famous faces who all deliver well with the little they have. Azaria is good and is given a good character (who died in real life covering the war in Iraq), Zahn manages to not be an annoying pr*ck – a feat in itself, but Dawson's presence was a mystery to me. She has very little to do other that be pretty and show the pressure in her job, but he is barely more than a cameo.

Overall this film lacks fireworks and bases it's slow pace on the facts of the true story and not hammy acting or directing flourishes. In this regard the film is enjoyable if a little slow. It squanders a few changes to make more of an impact but generally it delivers a true story in a manner that is straight but well told. A great cast aren't all used well but are good where it matters while also adding depth. Not the film that Saturday night crowds will be hoping for but a good story well told nonetheless.


38 of 55 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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