The Fifth Estate (2013) is a staggeringly powerful film eliciting our modern day technology and flow of information. We are shown just how dangerous information sharing can be.
I was captivated from the very beginning, with opening credits that laid out the pedigree of our world’s technology. I knew from the movie’s original preview that I wanted to see it before it had even been released, and later found that reviews had been very mixed, leaning more towards the negative than positive. After having finally watched it, I have come to the conclusion that anyone who gave this film a bad review, simply doesn’t “get it”.
The Idea: Focused on the news information site, WikiLeaks, this movie strongly portrays the danger involved when it comes to uncovering dirty secrets. Julian Assange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Daniel Domscheit-Berg (Daniel Bruhl) partner up to run the ever growing news leak site. Daniel, first under the impression from Julian that Wikileaks has hundreds of contributers, eventually learns that Julian alone has created several fake accounts for a better over all appearance. The two use their profuse tech knowledge to develope a site that would dominate the news industry, eventually putting themselves and others in danger with the information they uncover.
Pros: The film’s imagery helped lay out a more comprehendable version of the complex technology used, and the methods of information obtainment. For the average person, this knowledge doesn’t come easy, and the film makers did a decent job of handling this issue. Secondly, the films intensity was remarkable, depicting the relationships formed and shattered, the trust issues, the stress impressed upon the individuals involved, and so on. Lastly, Benedict Cumberbatch was just amazing in his role as Julian. Some viewers will recognize him as Sherlock from the BBC television series. His adaptation to his character’s personality and ways of thinking, is simply mind blowing.
Cons: I have to consider other viewing parties in my reviews, which for this review, is precisley why there even is a cons portion. To someone who isn’t very involved with modern day technology, perhaps middle aged adults and up (not all, just the ones that aren’t very tech savvy), this movie may be difficult to completely follow, or even enjoy. And I feel that even for the younger generation, if you aren’t interested in technology (or news for that matter), then you may find this two hour movie, a daft piece of work.
I would have to say that in my opinion, “The Fifth Estate” is one of the best 2013 films, if not the best, that I have seen. It may bore many people, but to someone like me, it will keep you on your feet with interest.
My rating: 85% I feel that the film makers should have catered more to the avaerage person for this film, but if you can keep up with it, then it truly is a masterpiece.
Thank you for reading, and if you find this film even slightly intriguing then I highly suggest giving it a chance!