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The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers
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The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers -- The story of what happens when a former Pentagon insider, armed only with his conscience, steadfast determination, and a file cabinet full of classified documents, decides to challenge an "Imperial" Presidency-answerable to neither Congress, the press, nor the people-in order to help end the Vietnam War.

Overview

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Writers:
Lawrence Lerew (written by) &
Rick Goldsmith (written by) ...
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Plot:
"The Most Dangerous Man in America" is the story of what happens when a former Pentagon insider, armed only with his conscience... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 5 wins & 2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Ellsberg's Crusade in the search of truth in a really great documentary See more (19 total) »

Cast

 
Peter Arnett ... Himself - Associated Press Correspondent (archive footage)
Ben Bagdikian ... Himself - Editor, Washington Post
Ann Beeson ... Herself - Associate Legal Director, ACLU
John Dean ... Himself - White House Counsel to President Nixon
Daniel Ellsberg ... Himself
Patricia Ellsberg ... Herself
Robert Ellsberg ... Himself - Daniel's Son
Richard Falk ... Himself - Professor of International Law
Max Frankel ... Himself - Washington Bureau Chief, New York Times
J. William Fulbright ... Himself - Chair Foreign Relations Committee (archive footage)
James Goodale ... Himself - General Counsel, New York Times
Mike Gravel ... Himself - Senator (D-Alaska)

Morton Halperin ... Himself - Supervisor, Vietnam War Study (as Mort Halperin)

Lyndon Johnson ... Himself - President (archive footage)
Randy Kehler ... Himself - Draft Resister
Bud Krogh ... Himself - Director, 'Plumbers' Unit - Nixon White House (as Egil Krogh)
Pete McCloskey ... Himself - Representative, California
Wayne Morse ... Himself - Senator, Oregon (archive footage)

Richard Nixon ... Himself - President (archive footage)
Thomas Oliphant ... Himself - Reporter, Boston Globe (as Tom Oliphant)

Dan Rather ... Himself - Reporter (archive footage)
Tony Russo ... Himself - RAND Analyst
Thomas Schelling ... Himself - RAND Analyst / Nobel Laureate
Hedrick Smith ... Himself - Reporter, New York Times
Janaki Tschannerl ... Herself - Peace Activist
Leonard Weinglass ... Himself - Russo Defense Attorney

Howard Zinn ... Himself - Historian

Directed by
Judith Ehrlich 
Rick Goldsmith 
 
Writing credits
Lawrence Lerew (written by) &
Rick Goldsmith (written by) &
Judith Ehrlich (written by) &
Michael Chandler (written by)

Produced by
Lynn Adler .... associate producer
Judith Ehrlich .... producer
Jodie Evans .... executive producer
Rick Goldsmith .... producer
Max Good .... assistant producer
Claire Greensfelder .... consulting producer
Karen Payne .... consulting producer
 
Original Music by
Blake Leyh 
 
Cinematography by
Vicente Franco 
Dan Krauss 
 
Film Editing by
Michael Chandler 
Rick Goldsmith 
Lawrence Lerew 
 
Production Management
Jorge Trelles .... production manager
 
Sound Department
Nick Bertoni .... sound recordist
James Lebrecht .... supervising sound editor
Alex Wilmer .... sound designer
 
Animation Department
Eli Noyes .... animation director
Tom Rubalcava .... layout artist (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Michael Chandler .... consulting editor
Jesse Spencer .... on-line editor
Jesse Spencer .... post-production coordinator
Stephen Vittoria .... editor: Theatrical Trailer
 
Other crew
Lisa Callif .... clearance counsel
Thomas A. Cohen .... legal services
Michael Donaldson .... clearance counsel
Kenn Rabin .... archival consultant
 

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92 min
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Goofs:
Anachronisms: (at around 1h 19 mins) Three Black Hawk helicopters are shown disembarking combat-equipped soldiers, ostensibly in Viet Nam. While the first YUH-60 did in fact fly before the fall of Saigon, it was 1976 before three of them had been produced. Production aircraft were not delivered until 1978.See more »
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8 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Ellsberg's Crusade in the search of truth in a really great documentary, 19 January 2011
Author: Rodrigo Amaro (rodrigo882008@hotmail.com) from São Paulo, Brazil

If now we have Julian Assange and his feared Wikileaks to tells us the truth behind powerful organizations and their secrets we must thank that one day a man named Daniel Ellsberg who saw what's going wrong with another gigantic corporation named United States and its affairs during the Vietnam war and decided to be one of the most important characters in history by leaking to the press the infamous Pentagon Papers, a Top Secret study revealing the whole truth about what was really happening in Vietnam and the U.S. involvement in it since 1945.

In "The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers" directors Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith interview Ellsberg and other people involved in Dr. Ellsberg's career and life before and after the Pentagon papers affair, from his work on RAND Corporation and his entrance working in the Pentagon under the command of Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara. After seeing how bad things were in Vietnam (and he was there himself), after plans and more plans of increasing conflicts and more attacks in Vietnam, seeing that his work was being perpetrated for wrong things Ellsberg changed his views of what he was doing; and after attending a protest against the war, he decided to do the right thing: show to the American public the truth about the war, what was going on in Vietnam and show that his country had nothing to do in there.

The documentary establishes all the risk this guy went through, how he executed the leaking giving the study to Senators who were opposed to the war and to 17 newsgroups, starting with The New York Times who was censored by Nixon because of the publishing of the papers, and all the medias who tried to publish the papers was censored until the Supreme Court decided that the censorship was wrong.

In less than two hours the movie displays lots of information without being boring or too much extensive, everything is very interesting to follow, very contrived and well put together (but the first minutes are a little bit slow, you have to be persistent to watch it). The most captivating part is when we see all the Ellsberg and his friend Daniel Russo crusade after they were charged of espionage, and the whole controversy about the publishing of the papers and that are still relevant today in a time where secrets can't be revealed otherwise there's always someone who'll try to impeach, to suffocate the freedom of speech, and the freedom of press; in a world where just simply stand for something and to have an opinion still it's too dangerous and might cause a war, and by war is mean not only the armed conflict, but the idealistic conflict, the words conflict.

Here's a film that shows us the man behind the act; a David among thousands of Golias; a man who worked and defended his country and was accused by it at the same time while trying to protect the country interests and lives; a man who changed things and fought for the right thing, taking all the necessary and unnecessary risks for it and even obtained more than he wanted. This is a real story with real persons and it's a great story to be seen. 10/10

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