Review State of Play: Press In Crisis

State of Play does justice in all ingenious ways to its remake.

A playful remake on the already towering 4 hour miniseries is really not a small feat. It won’t get unnoticed. Kevin MacDonald is a director who sets up the pace for this political/press thriller. A tightly wound script is the hallmark of this sparsely successful film.

State of Play tells the story of a journalist played acutely by Russell Crowe. His performance is more of a staged restraint. It really bodes well with hi character. Russell’s use of his lower decibels of his voice works like water on the sunset. This film really rides on his character development and the spellbinding oily cameo of Jason Bateman.

The rest of the cast are wasted to a certain degree. But they do embellish and elevate the performance of the star performer Russell. The film probes into the death of a Congressman’s mistress. A woman who is eventually killed by a covert group of people; there is no turning back after the smartly staged suicide. Who are the ones accountable for this? News footage channels a national outcry from many bureaucrats. The ensuing drama rings through the halls of the senate.

The TV series focused on the truth behind the details. Does it really matter to get everything absolutely correct? Or do we avoid the details and give the news new meaning? Sleaze is the adage of all the printed press. Investigative reporting is a ruthless profession. But when it involves friends it is like watching your own friend being operated on. The situation deals with a lot of reversals and relentless chance of exposure.

Blogs are cringed the position of the newspaper editions in Washington. They are replacing all that is sacred in the news rooms. Newspapers are really loosing their charms and even with the advent of the entire crisis around the world: They have really lost their age old charm. Rachel McAdams plays a blogger who assists Russell Crowe on his pursuits; at times futile yet fulfilling. Will they be able to bring down the organization said to privatize the whole defense management?

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But the film is left hanging because of its indulgence in the story; without really getting into the ethics of journalistic independence and what really to report? The subjects are really broached on the surface. Pictures are used to tell a story revealing very little. Another film that was akin to such an approach was the beautiful Constant Gardener. But the latter succeeds in its purpose. State of Play is not a bad film per say; there are moments; cherishing the ramblings in the offices; will hopefully give us a chance to see a world: we read close up each morning.

Blu Ray Transfer

This is a pristine transfer. The images are reverberated with images of clipping and press junkets and the whole atmosphere of the press room is not akin to any of the comparable Hollywood films. There is a dark tone to many of the approaches done by the cinematographer. The audio evolves the chattier portions of the film beautifully. We are hoping for more features to the sound in many of the later titles in this fashion. One of the moments in the local diner, noisy news rooms are done with a lot of warm tones and sounds.

Blu Ray Features

Exclusive U-Control Features: The options allow you to see the differences in both the master TV series and the film adaptation. A Picture by picture analyses of these differences is highlighted in these options. There are also discussions, interviews and glimpses that really hold promise to this option. There is also a Location option which tells you where most of the action in the film is held and the real life locations.

Making of State Play: Another feature seen in the DVD production; focuses on the BBC miniseries and its adaptation into the film. Once again loads of interviews with the script writers and the creators of the new film. It covers good ground showing many of the hardships faced during the filming.

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Deleted Scenes: Strictly for fans of the film. Just some character developments that wont really make much of difference to the strength of this film.

Finally BD-Live Functionality is also available.


John has a keen sense of what ticks in the world of film. He can also be seen in three distinct short film titled Woken Shell, The Tea Shop in the Moon and The Waiting. Cinema has been the basic diet he has been on for the last 10 years. His personality can be judged by the choices of his films.



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