‘The Post’ engages, inspires audiences

Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, Philip Casnoff, David Cross, Tracy Letts, Bradley Whitford, Jessie Mueller and Carrie Coon in The Post (2017) Photo by Photo Credit: Niko Tavernise

Tyler Manning

The Academy Awards are approaching and that signals the release of movies slated to be nominated, including the film “The Post.”

“The Post” tells the story of The Washington Post publishing top secret government information given to them by a third party regarding the government’s involvement in the Vietnam War.

With the controversy of Edward Snowden leaking of government information to major news outlets, “The Post” answers the challenging question of whether government information should be public record or should the establishment be allowed certain privacies in order to govern more effectively.

The film echoes what The Washington Post argued when it was faced with the question: For there to be a republic that promotes freedom, there needs be freedom of the press to call out the government for their wrongdoings.

This message is portrayed beautifully as there is a tension to the film that carries all throughout as the staff of the paper argue whether or not to publish the information given to them.

One of the most striking attributes of the film is its beautiful cinematography, particularly when looking at the framing and blocking.

It is no secret that Stephen Spielberg is a master at his craft, and it truly shows here. The direction is strong and his style is apparent throughout. I love the length of his shots, usually holding the same shot for 45 seconds to a minute before cutting to the next shot.

Another major aspect of the film is the talent on screen. The film stars a plethora of amazing actors and actresses.

It is a marvel seeing Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep work together. Their on screen chemistry is kinetic. Seeing such great talent flow so well together on screen was a treat.

Streep does exceptionally well playing a leader. She is strong willed, smart and inspiring. Her character is a strong woman faced with the adversity that comes from a capitalistic, patriarchal society. Despite her leadership being doubted because of her gender, she commands respect and Streep portrays this exceptionally. With the recent #metoo movement and the demand for Hollywood to showcase more powerful women, it is nice to see movies like “The Post” contribute to the cause.

Tom Hanks plays a stubborn, strong-willed man. He truly takes charge and brings another great performance. He is charismatic despite having a sometimes overbearing personality. His on-screen presence demands attention and is incredibly hard not to watch. This is not a new feat for Tom Hanks, though, considering his amazing body of work.

Not only were the two leads great to watch, but so was the supporting cast. I am huge fan of Bob Odenkirk after watching his work as Saul Goodman in “Better Call Saul” and “Breaking Bad” and he shines here as well. Though his role may not be as major as the others, he holds his own well.

Overall, I was incredibly impressed with “The Post.” It was a smart effective retelling of a famous event that made the source material interesting and captivating. The cinematography, great performances and clever writing make the film stand out in a great and competitive year for film. I am looking forward to the Academy Awards and seeing how this film holds up against the competition.

Do yourself a favor and watch this.

RATING: 9/10

Available in local theaters