David Merrill (Robert De Niro), a fictitious 1950s Hollywood Director, returns from filming abroad in France to find that his loyalty has been called into question by the House Committee on Un-American Activities, and he is unable to work until cleared. Before being called, his highest priority had been his work to the extent of leaving his wife (Annette Bening) and son (Luke Edwards) alone for several months at a time. He initially refuses to implicate others or himself in a private meeting with Roy Cohn and a studio lawyer. This decision initially to stick to his principles first leaves him unable to work in his profession, even with films and producers he never would have worked with before. Harassment by the F.B.I. leaves him unable to work on Broadway, with advertising agencies, or even in a small film repair shop. Finally, having fallen so far, and tempted with a new offer to direct a film from his old studio (if he testifies), he agrees to go before the Committee, initially ...
Mike Harris <firstname.lastname@example.org>
All it took was a whisper.
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Did You Know?
The film was entered into and then selected to screen in competition at the Cannes Film Festival in 1991. See more
There is a Milwaukee Braves baseball pennant on the wall of Merrill's son's room. This film takes place in 1951 and 1952. The Braves didn't move to Milwaukee from Boston until 1953. See more
They want the names, David, that's why we're here. C'mon, you can't beat these bastards. You keep this up and they'll tear up your head off.
They've already done that.
[after a brief moment
I beg to be excused, Mr. Chairman. My client has just dismissed me!
Features Texaco Star Theatre
Music by Harry Warren
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Performed by Louis Armstrong See more