That this incendiary film by Maria Schrader flopped at the US box office is in no way a reflection on its quality or its importance. Indeed, it’s more of a condemnation of a moviegoing public that’s uninterested in any movie that doesn’t involve overqualified
actors in silly costumes. Actually, in journalistic circles, New York Times investigative reporters (and working mothers) Jodi Kantor (Zoe Kazan, who impressed in Ruby Sparks, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs and The Big Sick) and Megan Twohey (the always superb Carey Mulligan – The Dig, An Education, Never Let Me Go) are considered superheroes of a sort for their pavement-pounding probe into decades of sexual harassment, intimidation and rape in Hollywood that ended up putting predatory producer Harvey Weinstein in prison and sparking the global #MeToo movement.
The film offers a dynamite cast that includes Patricia Clarkson, Andre Braugher, Samantha Morton and Jennifer Ehle. Ashley Judd, an early real-life Weinstein victim, plays herself in what has to be one of the most satisfying roles in Hollywood history. The problem with newsroom procedurals is that they’re visually limited — meetings, typing, computer screens, knocking on doors, interviews. So the tension, emotion and satisfaction this film generates is doubly laudable. It manages to be thrilling and methodical at the same time. This is a movie that will make you a better person. (129 min).