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The Good Shepherd (2006)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 79,818 users   Metascore: 61/100
Reviews: 474 user | 196 critic | 33 from Metacritic.com

The tumultuous early history of the Central Intelligence Agency is viewed through the prism of one man's life.

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Title: The Good Shepherd (2006)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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Storyline

Laconic and self-contained, Edward Wilson heads CIA covert operations during the Bay of Pigs. The agency suspects that Castro was tipped, so Wilson looks for the leak. As he investigates, he recalls, in a series of flashbacks, his father's death, student days at Yale (poetry; Skull and Bones), recruitment into the fledgling OSS, truncated affairs, a shotgun marriage, cutting his teeth on spy craft in London, distance from his son, the emergence of the Cold War, and relationships with agency, British, and Soviet counterparts. We watch his idealism give way to something else: disclosing the nature of that something else is at the heart of the film's narration as he closes in on the leak. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The true story of the birth of the CIA through the eyes of a man who never existed. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence, sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

22 December 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El buen pastor  »

Box Office

Budget:

$90,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£629,863 (UK) (23 February 2007)

Gross:

£1,709,530 (UK) (9 March 2007)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

James Horner was signed to compose the score, but quit due to creative differences with director Robert De Niro. Marcelo Zarvos replaced him soon after and was assisted by Bruce Fowler. See more »

Goofs

In the TELEX scene, the word "know" is incorrectly spelled "KONW". See more »

Quotes

[from trailer]
Edward Wilson: My orders came through. I'll be going overseas.
Clover Wilson: What are you going to do, Edward? Save the world?
Edward Wilson: I'll do what I can.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits feature the dedication "In memory of Gretchen Rau". See more »

Connections

Featured in Casting By (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Salve Regina
Written by Arvo Pärt
Performed by Polyphony - chorus, Stephen Layton - conductor, Christopher Bowers Broadbent - organ
Courtesy of Hyperion Records Limited
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
An intelligent tale of duty and loyalty
1 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I went into the theatre with little knowledge but that I was going to be watching a film about a man who was one of the founders of the CIA. Expecting this, I thought this movie was outstanding and a mind game from start to finish.

What one has to understand about the movie itself is that it is as complicated as the storyline. It starts out with two different time lines, decades apart and slowly one reaches the other. That in itself can be difficult to follow, but it is well worth the effort to pay attention because if you can leave the theatre understanding what took place, you walk away with a little more knowledge about the human complex.

Because this is a story more about the soul and our humanity than it is about spies and country. Those are just the means by which De Niro uses.

Every actor is placed remarkably well and no more so than Matt Damon himself. It is his acting that gives us Edward Wilson; a man without airs who doesn't compromise. The movie spans over twenty years and fortunately we see those years reflected in most of the characters. Angelina Jolie does the neglected, alcoholic wife superbly. William Hurt and Lee Pace as Richard Hayes both give a wonderful performance taking their character's flaws from subtle to substantial by the end.

Some might wonder how so many actors could be recruited for such small roles, like Alec Baldwin, Michael Gambon, and Joe Pesci, but one only has to see as far as the director to get their answer. Don't let the big names and the anagram CIA get you. This movie is as edgy as it is intricate with twists and turns that take the viewer through the world of trust and the human element. A man like Edward Wilson is just the perfect vessel for the journey.


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