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Official Secrets (2019)

Trailer
2:13 | Trailer
The true story of a British whistleblower who leaked information to the press about an illegal NSA spy operation designed to push the UN Security Council into sanctioning the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Director:

Gavin Hood

Writers:

Gregory Bernstein (screenplay), Sara Bernstein (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
583 ( 53)
5 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Keira Knightley ... Katharine Gun
Matt Smith ... Martin Bright
Matthew Goode ... Peter Beaumont
Rhys Ifans ... Ed Vulliamy
Adam Bakri ... Yasar Gun
Ralph Fiennes ... Ben Emmerson
Conleth Hill ... Roger Alton
Indira Varma ... Shami Chakrabarti
Jeremy Northam ... Ken Macdonald
John Heffernan ... James Welch
Monica Dolan ... Fiona Bygate
Tamsin Greig ... Elizabeth Wilmshurst
Niccy Lin ... Mi-Yung
Jack Farthing ... Andy Dumfries
Gabrielle Downey Gabrielle Downey ... Mrs. Archer
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Storyline

A morality tale for the 21st century, Official Secrets tells the true story of British Intelligence whistle-blower Katharine Gun who, during the immediate run-up to the 2003 Iraq invasion, leaked a top secret NSA memo exposing a joint US-UK illegal spying operation against members of the UN Security Council. The memo proposed blackmailing smaller, undecided member states into voting for war. At great personal and professional risk, journalist Martin Bright published the leaked document in The Observer newspaper in London, and the story made headlines around the world. Members of the Security Council were outraged and any chance of a UN resolution in favour of war collapsed. But within days, Bush declared he no longer needed UN backing and invaded anyway. As Iraq descended into chaos, Katharine was arrested and charged with breaching the Official Secrets Act. Martin faced potential charges too. Their legal battles exposed the highest levels of government in both London and Washington ...

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Nothing is More Dangerous Than the Truth See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is not the first time that Matt Smith and Matthew Goode have appeared together on screen. In The Crown (2016) they played brothers-in-law, Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and Tony Armstrong-Jones (respectively), who were husbands, Queen Elizabeth II and her sister, Princess Margaret. See more »

Goofs

When Catherine was arrested she was taken to a local police station in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, which was staffed by police wearing Metropolitan Police uniforms (ie from London). The local police are Gloucestershire Constabulary. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Clerk of the Court: Katharine Teresa Gun, you are charged with an offense contrary to section 1, subsection 1, of the Official Secrets Act of 1989, in that you did knowingly and intentionally disclose top-secret intelligence information contrary to the said act. How do you plead? Guilty or not guilty?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Good Morning Britain: Episode dated 11 October 2019 (2019) See more »

User Reviews

 
Understated but edge-of-the-seat stuff
26 October 2019 | by jeremy-dent-627-314416See all my reviews

Beautifully-crafted production with great performances from the cast. It seems pointless regurgitating the plot because it is factual and well-known and, despite any real surprises, the director keeps the tension going. It just shows you can craft thoroughly enjoyable films taking the high moral ground without the ridiculous violence and coy sexuality of most Hollywood offerings. The core of the film is the ethical question of whether state employees act for the people or the government and the latter's privileged cronies and backers. Catherine Gun calls this into question and, despite the UK Government rephrasing the Official Secrets Act, she triumphs because of the duplicity of the then UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and the obvious willingness of the USA to prosecute a patently illegal war with Iraq whatever the United Nations votes or does. The door to neo-liberalism creaks open a bit but then we all know what is behind it.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

UK | USA | Switzerland | China

Language:

English | Mandarin

Release Date:

30 August 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Official Secrets See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$64,965, 1 September 2019

Gross USA:

$1,988,546

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,473,603
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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