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Monday, 30 November 2015 12:12

Serody movie review: Truth

Written by  Bob Serody

Posted November 30, 2015

Movie Review: Truth
By Bob Serody

In the movie Truth, Robert Redford, who portrays former CBS news anchor Dan Rather, states that TV news and investigative reporting were never expected to make a profit for the networks. They were there to provide a service for the public by telling them what was really happening in the world. Dan Rather explains that curiosity was what drove him to enter journalism. Even then in 2004, before he was asked to resign from CBS as news anchor, a sad change was beginning to happen to broadcast news. The public was becoming accustomed to news as entertainment. The networks also expected the delivery of news to make a profit with advertising. Today, rather than being concerned with the facts, the TV listener is driven by partisan politics to select the channel that will satisfy his or her particular taste. In other words, the TV audience now dials up canned misinformation presented by a talking head, frequently interrupted with commercials. Truth refers to the trust the TV audience once had in believing that what they were hearing about events around the world was based on objective reporting.
Truth is a political docudrama based on the memoir by American journalist and television producer Mary Mapes. It centers on the investigation by CBS news of George W. Bush’s participation in the Texas Air National Guard during the Vietnam War, and occurred during Bush’s reelection campaign in 2004. The conclusion of this CBS news investigation was that Bush had been accepted into the Air National Guard through the influence of powerful interests to avoid the Vietnam draft, and to make the matter worse, he was AWOL most of the time. This embarrassing revelation, which was aired on 60 Minutes, would most certainly have resulted in the defeat of George W. Bush for the Presidency. But supporters of Bush disputed these results by claiming that damaging documents presented to the public were forged, although this charge was never proven. Then a prime witness, on whom the case by CBS depended, decided to recant his testimony.  
Cate Blanchett plays producer Mary Mapes in an Academy Award-worthy performance. The movie involves a critical struggle that affected not only the outcome of the presidential election in 2004, but also negatively impacted the major role of TV networks regarding their responsibility to keep the public informed about the truth when reporting the news.  
During the current presidential campaign, where issues take a back seat to personal attacks, and Jeb Bush is having a terrible time attempting to preserve the Bush dynasty with his low polling numbers, this is not the movie he would want the public to see. Unfortunately, Truth is drawing far too few moviegoers in Brevard County.

Bob Serody is a member of the Space Coast Progressive Alliance.



Dan Rather says the 'Truth' movie is true

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