Watching Good Night, and Good Luck a couple of weeks ago was something of a cathartic experience. George Clooney’s writing and directorial skills came as a pleasant surprise, but the film’s main draw for this viewer was the way it tapped into an ongoing frustration with the self-censorship of much of the mainstream media, particularly in the USA. While direct links between the McCarthyism that is the film’s conflict and modern times should only be drawn cautiously, that period offers a historical lesson that has been forgotten all too quickly.
But those planning to watch the film would do well to subsequently read this two part piece at slate.com. The writer raises many questions about Clooney’s choice of material and structure, leaving an impression that the filmmaker’s approach was to use a similar cut and paste technique to that Edward Murrow utilised in his programs about McCarthy. The film stands despite the criticism, but probably shouldn’t be taken without some awareness of it.