I’ve been waiting for the arrival of October 18th for a long time. It’s finally here and I get to reap my reward of watching my cinema husband on screen, Mr. Benedict Cumberbatch, as he stars in “The Fifth Estate”. I am going to try to put the Cumberbabe perspective in my pocket because I am too grown for that (I think!).
Psyche! I can’t nor should I. Benny brought his A-game 100% like a NFL quarterback in the Superbowl. There were times when I knew I was watching him and there were moments when my suspension of disbelief came through as he morphed into Julian Assange. If you don’t know the latter, may I suggest looking him up as I don’t have time to teach right now. Anyway, Benny grasped fully Assange’s mannerisms, speech, and intensity.
However, I must say that he carried the film. While I paid attention to him and Daniel Bruehl, I didn’t care for the other actors, which include Anthony Mackie, Laura Linney, and, dare I say, Stanley Tucci (one of the best character actors out there). The energy left the building whenever Benny wasn’t on screen. That’s a shame because a movie should never rest on any one actor. A film should be a group project. Unfortunately, it seems that Benny study for the exam, while the others used Crib Notes.
Now, for the direction, I can honestly say that Bill Condon set us up to introduce the uninitiated to Assange’s primary crusade of protecting whistleblowers as they leak information that illustrates corruption and malice. Yet, Condon switches up and shows Assange later as a maniacal tyrant hellbent on destroying the lives of others. Perhaps, he was showing both sides of the coin, or how one man’s crusade became an arrogant, myopic obsession. If that’s the case, it’s pretty one-sided and you can tell the levity of the source material, which is the memoir of Assange’s former colleague, Daniel Domscheit-Berg.
After watching the film, I have to take a nap because being part of the CumberCollective is exhausting!
Go see the film. It’s so much better than an unnecessary remake (Carrie) and a chick spinning alone in space (Gravity). Besides, I can show you a better time with the latter, if you are privy to watching me off my meds.
- ‘The Fifth Estate’ Review (screenrant.com)
- Review: Wikileaks’ Assange deserves better movie than “Fifth Estate” (themorningsun.com)
- Film Review: The Fifth Estate (writerlovesmovies.com)