Features Live Action Movies

The Post

Director – Steven Spielberg – 2017 – US – 12a – 116m


The White House versus the press. Set in the 1970s, Steven Spielberg’s journalistic epic tells the story of The Washington Post and the Pentagon Papers – available for digital streaming

In 1971, The New York Times broke the story of the Pentagon Papers. These documents detailed how the incumbent Nixon administration and its predecessors had increased the scale of the US involvement in the unwinnable war in Vietnam for political gain rather than the national good. The administration’s response was swift and repressive: within two days, a legal injunction prevented the paper from publishing further details. The Washington Post (often shortened to The Post, as in the film title), at the time more a local paper than a national one, stepped into the breach with its reporters hunting down the New York Times’ source so that it could publish more of the story as it emerged. Having just floated on the New York Stock Exchange, the paper found itself in the tricky situation of being accountable to conservative shareholders who didn’t like the idea of exposing their investment to risks with the potential to close the paper down for good.

The two main players in this story, as envisaged by Liz Hannah’s original script, were The Post’s editor Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks) and publisher Katherine Graham (Meryl Streep). Bradlee is the hard-nosed newshound gutted that The Times has scooped The Post and determined to make the most of the story once his rival is prohibited from further publication. Graham is the former housewife and mother who, having inherited The Post from her late husband, is determined to make a success of it at a time when women didn’t do things like publish newspapers because their place was unquestionably in the home... [read more]

The Post is out in the UK on Friday, January 19th 2018. It is available for digital streaming from May.

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