Everyone has fantasised about emailing their boss & unleashing what they really think of them. Few actually ever reach for the keyboard. Fewer still end up pressing 'send'. No one has made ...
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Nick Broomfield met Hsiao Hung Pai, a journalist who was working for the Guardian, when making his feature film 'Ghosts' (about the Morecambe Bay Chinese Cockle Pickers ). As an experiment ... See full summary »
Everyone has fantasised about emailing their boss & unleashing what they really think of them. Few actually ever reach for the keyboard. Fewer still end up pressing 'send'. No one has made a film about it - until now. One Rogue Reporter is the story of Rich Peppiatt, a tabloid hack who snaps over his red top paper's fixation with sensationalism over substance and titillation over truth. When the phone hacking scandal engulfs Rupert Murdoch's News of the World, throwing tabloid ethics under the spotlight, Rich decides to use the skills he's honed on Fleet Street to turn-the-tables on the press barons peddling sex, lies and scaremongering under the cloak of journalism. The result is a hilariously satirical documentary: part investigative exposé; part comedy caper; part cri de coeur against unaccountable press power. What began as a critically-acclaimed comedy show at the Edinburgh Fringe has been inventively transferred to the screen with the help of incisive interviewees ranging from ... Written by
This is an interesting documentary on many levels. In its one hour running time it manages to punch above its weight and drive home just how odiously the British tabloid press have been treating people for several decades.
Via a juxtaposition of interviews with celebs and non-celebs about the wholly invasive scrutiny they were placed under by the tabloids, as well as clips from movies about the press and from the recent Leveson inquiry, the viewer is taken on a rather dirty (but interesting) journey into the world that many Fleet Street reporters inhabit. It isn't pleasant.
The documentary's presenter, Rich Peppiat - himself an ex-tabloid journalist for the execrable 'Daily Star' - has some balls for sure as he confronts the powerful editors and owners of these nasty papers and turns the tables on them by making them the focus of the same kind of intrusive and wholly fabricated stories these newspaper men had inflicted upon others. Does it work? No. Is it interesting? Yes. One particularly memorable scene is when Peppiat projects a porno film onto the side of the Daily Mail's offices in protest at its editor, Paul Dacre's, hypocrisy over sexual mores. There are more scenes of a similar nature but I won't reveal them here.
All in all, I thought this documentary about the gutter that is the UK's tabloid press was well made and worth an hour of my time. In effect, it told me nothing I did not already know and which was well documented by the Leveson inquiry and the trials which followed it. There remains one question for me, however, and that is...OK, so now we know; now what's going to happen?
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