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(2019) (Keira Knightley, Matt Smith) (R)
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- QUICK TAKE:
- Drama: A British intelligence translator must contend with the aftermath of leaking of a top-secret memo to outsiders, all in hopes of exposing a wrongdoing and stopping her country from joining the illegal invasion of Iraq.
- It's 2003 and Katharine Gun (KEIRA KNIGHTLEY) is a translator who works for Britain's Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) and listens to conversations in hopes of uncovering plots that could lead to another 9/11 style attack. She's married to cafe worker Yasar Gun (ADAM BAKRI) who's still going through the immigration process to become an official resident of England and is just a worker-bee cog in the overall scheme of government surveillance.
But then she receives a memo that's shared with her workers regarding a request from America's NSA that Britain help spy on certain United Nations delegates in order to obtain embarrassing intel that could be helpful, if necessary, in convincing them to vote in favor of the United States' desire to invade Iraq and take down Saddam Hussein.
Not a fan of such military action to begin with, she's appalled by the gall of such a request and thus decides, with some trepidation, that she must get it to the outside world. Thus, while risking violating Britain's Official Secrets Act, she passes on that memo to an anti-war associate who then gets that to reporter Martin Bright (MATT SMITH) who works for The Observer newspaper.
Realizing he has something potentially big, he tries to convince his editor, Peter Beaumont (MATTHEW GOODE), and the paper's publisher, Roger Alton (CONLETH HILL), that they should investigate the leak and, if proven valid, run a story on it. That sounds like a great idea to fellow journalist Ed Vulliamy (RHYS IFANS) who's never liked the paper's pro-government stance, and thus with his help Martin starts investigating and the story eventually runs.
That puts Katharine on the hot seat as she initially lies about knowing anything about the lead, but eventually confesses to the crime. All of which results in government prosecutor Ken Macdonald (JEREMY NORTHAM) wanting to drop the hammer on her and make an example of such illegal whistleblowing, all while his former associate, Ben Emmerson (RALPH FIENNES), decides -- knowing full well the long odds facing them -- to defend her in court.
- WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
- Some older teens might show some interest, but unless others are fans of anyone in the cast, it doesn't seem that likely.
- WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: R
- For language.
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