The dramatic courage of ‘Fair Game’

Updated
Let me finish tonight with a stirring movie I saw last night, “Fair Game.”I had heard of the first-rate script, the masterful performances by the leads, Naomi Watts and Sean Penn. What I was not prepared was “Fair Game” itself, the wondrous, dramatic courage of it all. The movie opens with this preternaturally gutsy CIA agent out in the world of terror, trying to stop the spread of nuclear weapons from getting into dangerous hands. I was simply overwhelmed by the sheer “guts” of Naomi Watts’ character. Anyone would be, especially an American, especially someone who has children like we do, young adults, and thinking how inspiring this must be to them, to have this “pull” to go out there and risk all for our country like this young woman did. The real-life Valerie Plame Wilson is the true hero of this saga, her career fighting the dangers facing us, her discipline in keeping it secret, her readiness to honor a loving marriage in the face of it all. And then, the crushing waterfall of betrayal, the decision by war hawks in this country, the neo-con crowd holed up in the White House bunker who wanted to protect the case they’d built for the Iraq war, that whole PR campaign they’d ramrodded out of the White House and the country’s op-ed pages, that ran roughshod over good journalism and all the other obstacles we need if skepticism and eventually truth is ever to survive the onslaught of propaganda, especially the war-whooping kind that was embraced by this country’s establishment after 9/11. This is one fine movie. While there never be another Casablanca, “Fair Game” is perfect for our murky time. It’s the great story of two people caught up in a dirty, ruthless campaign to justify a war that most Americans can see now was justified neither by fact or the fiction ordered up to sell it. What a role model for young women today, what a stunning portrait of the challenges of these times, the excitement of meeting them head-on, out there on point like her. Want to understand Iraq and how we got there? Want a real look into the Bush White House use that took us there? Want to see on the big screen what our nightly fights are all about on this little screen? Go see this movie.

The dramatic courage of 'Fair Game'

Updated