cblaze’s review published on Letterboxd:
A sharp, wicked tale of journalism at its worst. Media is given free reign in the United States in order to effect social change and hold the people who hold power in check. As we interlace money and celebrity into media, we invite profiteers and egomaniacs screaming "this is news" - blurring the lines of what is actual news and stagnating our country's growth by not holding people accountable.
As Chuck Tatum (Kirk Douglas) comes storming into a sleepy newspaper demanding a job to relaunch his turbulent career, he immediately laughs at the 'Tell the Truth' sign. As an audience are already giving in to his charms, he seems like a fun guy, someone we can joke around and catch a ball game with - but his laugh was our first warning.
He's open about being a problem child. He seems well meaning and no one seems put off to him as a threat. We can all appreciate that honesty... He's just a lovable scamp!
As the story unfolds we find out so much more of what's below the surface - how far the dark crevices of his being run. It's a very difficult and complex performance - one that Kirk Douglas pours out of him with ease. Brilliant performance!
The script and direction were outstanding, there was a humor that kept things loose and some great shots, wonderful work. The middle could've been tightened up a bit - the build up of the frenzy felt like it was hitting a few of the same notes repeatedly.
This would be a great double feature with Tony Gilroy's Nightcrawler - both having great performances and playing in the dark side of media. Great film - everyone should check this one out!