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Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005)

 -  Drama  -  4 November 2005 (USA)
7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 76,891 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 514 user | 346 critic | 41 from Metacritic.com

Broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow looks to bring down Senator Joseph McCarthy.

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Title: Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005)

Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005) on IMDb 7.6/10

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Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 49 wins & 81 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Natalie
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Dianne Reeves ...
Jazz Singer
Peter Martin ...
Pianist
Christoph Luty ...
Bassist
Jeff Hamilton ...
Drummer
Matt Catingub ...
Saxophonist
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Jesse Zousmer
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John Aaron
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Eddie Scott
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Storyline

In the early 1950's, the threat of Communism created an air of paranoia in the United States and exploiting those fears was Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin. However, CBS reporter Edward R. Murrow and his producer Fred W. Friendly decided to take a stand and challenge McCarthy and expose him for the fear monger he was. However, their actions took a great personal toll on both men, but they stood by their convictions and helped to bring down one of the most controversial senators in American history. Written by Brian Washington <Sargebri@att.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They Took On The Government With Nothing But The Truth See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild thematic elements and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

| | |

Language:

Release Date:

4 November 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Buenas noches, y buena suerte.  »

Box Office

Budget:

$7,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$30,573 (Chile) (3 March 2006)

Gross:

£2,088,488 (UK) (17 March 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Most of the text of Edward R. Murrow's speech bookending the movie is taken word-for-word from the actual keynote address he delivered to the 1958 RTNDA convention. The actual conclusion to the speech, after Murrow's line about television, used strictly for entertainment rather than education, being nothing more than wires and lights in a box, went as follows: "There is a great and perhaps decisive battle to be fought against ignorance, intolerance and indifference. This weapon of television could be useful. Stonewall Jackson, who knew something about the use of weapons, is reported to have said, 'When war comes, you must draw the sword and throw away the scabbard.' The trouble with television is that it is rusting in the scabbard during a battle for survival." See more »

Goofs

During Murrow's speech at the RNTDA Convention - the scene that bookends the film - the screen to his left reads: "A Salute to Edward R. Murrow - October 25, 1958". The script font used on the screen is Ballantines; this typeface was only designed 16 years later in 1974 (by Brendel Typestudio). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Sig Mickelson: In 1935, Ed Murrow began his career with CBS. When World War II broke out, it was his voice that brought the Battle of Britain home to us, through his "This Is London" radio series. He started with us all, many of us here tonight, when television was in its infancy, with the news documentary show, "See It Now." He threw stones at giants. Segregation, exploitation of migrant workers, apartheid, J. Edgar Hoover, not the least of which, his historical fight with Senator McCarthy. He ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Even the rating band at the tail of the film is in black and white. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: You Kent Always Say What You Want (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

When I Fall in Love
(1952)
Music by Victor Young
Lyrics by Edward Heyman
Performed by Matt Catingub
Produced by Allen Sviridoff
Matt Catingub appears courtesy of Concord Records, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
When Things Were Black and White
13 November 2005 | by (N Syracuse NY) – See all my reviews

I've had the "Edward R. Murrow" Collection from CBS for years and have enjoyed watching it's biography of Murrow, the complete Milo Radulovich, McCarthy and Annie Lee Moss shows many times. I'm sure George Clooney must have these as well as he used the actual footage extensively in his fine drama "Good Night and Good Luck". As a previous poster said, by concentrating on what was actually presented, Clooney is able to focus on the ethical issues that were the real substance of the broadcasts, rather than the tragicomic personalities involved. He wants us to see that the same issues are in our lives today, (Clooney has had his own battles with would-be modern McCarthys like Bill O'Reilly), but he isn't going to force the issue. He's doing exactly what Murrow and Friendly did with the McCarthy broadcast: using the actual record to tell the story.

There are minor, but significant embellishments, mostly an impressive cast of actors who can tell us more with one look than an entire speech. Leading the way is David Straithairn as Murrow. Except for possessing a higher pitched voice than the original, he's got his man down cold. I would pick Frank Langella as William Paley, here presented as a man with ideals but who is rooted in the realities of business, the sort of guy who has to make the tough decisions the idealists like Murrow don't have to or want to deal with. Then there is Ray Wise as the vulnerable Don Hollenbeck, who was one of the co-creators of "You Are There", a program this film somewhat resembles. He wound up being "there" when he didn't really want to be.

What really enhances the show is the black and white photography, (actually, according to the notes, it was "The film was shot on color film on a grayscale set, then color-corrected in post" – whatever that means). Not only does it heighten the drama, (magazine photographers, in the days when they had a choice, said "black and white for drama, color for excitement"), but the tremendous resolution seems to bring out each furrow and poor on each person's face, allowing the viewer to see into their souls.


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