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Nothing But the Truth (2008)

Kate Beckinsale , Vera Farmiga  |  R |  DVD
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Kate Beckinsale, Vera Farmiga
  • Format: AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: April 28, 2009
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001PR0Y8K
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,249 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Nothing But the Truth" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

A U.S. President itching to start a war... A confidential report telling the Administration the opposite of what it wants to hear... A Beltway wife outed to the press as a CIA operative... And another woman, a hotshot reporter, threatened with jail because she won't reveal her source... Yes, it does sound like the Bush-era case of Valerie Plame and New York Times journalist Judith Miller--and by the time you make it to the end of writer-director Rod Lurie's latest inside-Washington shadowplay, you may wish he'd served up that real-life story instead of half-baked fiction. Kate Beckinsale plays the reporter, a rising star with a ponytail and a Pulitzer-worthy scoop, "Watergate and Iran-Contra combined." The film's best scenes have her tussling with the Plame figure (the formidable Vera Farmiga). Lurie makes them soccer moms whose kids play together--a proto-feminist gesture befitting the creator of The Contender (the movie with Joan Allen as a Vice Presidential nominee battling a sex scandal) and Commander-in-Chief (the short-lived TV series featuring Geena Davis as America's first woman President). Nothing but the Truth trumpets its this-wouldn't-happen-to-a-man outrage but resorts to woman's-picture subplots involving weak, unreliable spouses--then compounds the lapse by leaving the male roles underdeveloped. Lurie seems to be working his way down a checklist of themes (sexism, the need to protect the freedom of the press, the way lives get left behind by the 48-hour news cycle) and possible impacts a person in Beckinsale's position might experience. Finally, his film is a make-your-own-movie kit leaving the viewer free to focus on favorite ingredients. Apart from Beckinsale and Farmiga, the name cast (Angela Bassett, Noah Wyle, et al.) is mostly reduced to revving their engines, though Matt Dillon scores as a special prosecutor mixing folksiness and cold calculation, while Alan Alda gets to showboat as a legendary defense attorney. The widescreen setups abound in irritating mannerisms and pointless foreground clutter, but since cameraman Alik Sakharov did clean work throughout the epic run of HBO's The Sopranos, the blame must lie with the director. And that's the truth. --Richard T. Jameson

Product Description

Inspired by true events. Kate Beckinsale and Academy Award® nominee Matt Dillon (Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role for Crash, 2004) lead an all-star cast in this explosive story about a Washington, D.C. reporter who faces a possible jail sentence for outing a CIA agent and refusing to out her source. The all-star cast includes Academy Award® nominees Alan Alda (Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role for The Aviator, 2004), Angela Bassett (Best Actress in a Leading Role for What's Love Got to Do with It, 1993); Emmy® Award nominee David Schwimmer (Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for Friends, 1994), Golden Globe® nominee Noah Wyle (Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture for ER, 1997-99) and Vera Farmiga (The Departed).

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Drama Based on Newspaper Headlines May 23, 2009
"Nothing But the Truth" is based on the events surrounding the prison sentence of "New York Times" reporter Judith Miller after she refused to reveal the source who identified undercover CIA agent Valerie Plame.
Prompted by a failed assassination attempt on the President of the United States, investigative reporter Rachel Armstrong (Kate Beckinsale) discovers that a neighborhood woman is a CIA operative. Rachel believes she has happened upon the Big Story, and is backed by her editor (Angela Bassett), the newspaper's legal counsel (Noah Wyle), and her First Amendment lawyer (Alan Alda). Federal prosecutor Patton Dubois (Matt Dillon) wants her to name her sources. She refuses and is thrown in jail for contempt of court. She thinks she will soon be released, but as her incarceration lengthens, her relationship with husband (David Schwimmer) and son (Preston Bailey) starts to deteriorate.
Performances are first-rate in this tense political thriller. Beckinsale is sympathetic as the idealistic yet frightened reporter, but Dillon dazzles as the Javert-like Fed who will use anything and everything within his power to break the reporter's will. The changing relationship between Rachel and her family gives the film humanity and elevates it from a mere "ripped from the headlines" flick to one of depth.
Bonus extras include deleted scenes, a making-of featurette, and filmmakers' commentary.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Must-see DVD April 16, 2009
The smart, engrossing political thriller in the tradition of All the President's Men has a welcome female twist: two working mommies -- one a DC journalist (Kate Beckinsale), one a CIA agent (Vera Farmiga) -- cross paths on their kids' soccer field with disastrous results. Beckinsale clearly doesn't need a rubber catsuit to be terrific; she's focused, genuine, and sympathetic as the investigative reporter whose first big scoop crumples the career and family of her spook subject, with plenty of collateral damage in her own life when she goes to prison for withholding her source's name. And The Departed's Farmiga balances between dangerous adversary and wounded mother in a volatile supporting role.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Truth Hurts October 1, 2009
The freedom of the press, issues of national security, and the consequences of standing by one's personal principles are all on trial in "Nothing But the Truth." I'm not sure why the reviews here tend to be so negative, save the ranting of those who fail to see that this film represents two sides.

Kate Beckinsale plays the role of a journalist who writes a story implicating the government's top echelons in declaring an act of war with trumped-up evidence. Matt Dillon plays the prosecutor who pressures her to reveal her source--since that source has violated the law by naming a covert CIA agent, played to great effect by Vera Farmiga. Yes, the plot has some obvious correlations to events of the past few years, which seems to be the thorn in the side of some reviewers, but it gives both sides important things to say. While the film does center around Beckinsale, building sympathy for her, it also gives Dillon's character a chance to stand by his own moral codes to protect his country. The issues of the First and Fifth Amendment are considered here.

"Nothing But the Truth" keeps us hooked by the secret identify of the source that Beckinsale protects with such ferocity. Alan Alda plays her lawyer, while Angela Bassett plays her editor. Though both add layers, it's Beckinsale, Farmiga, and Dillon who drive the story. Beckinsale and Farmiga are strong female characters, both threatened with the losses of marriage and family ties, both feeling persecuted for doing their jobs.

I hold dear the power of the written word and the right to speak the truth. I also believe national security is of vital importance, and I like the fact this film honors that as well.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
What if there was a story which featured a Washington political journalist in the lead. What if this journalist discovered that the White House had taken intelligence from a CIA operative and falsified it as an excuse to justify a war with an enemy country that the White House wanted to invade? What if the journalist discovered this information in a way that meant that the person who supplied the information had committed treason? Would the journalist's first obligation be to keep secret the information, or at least to protect the identify of the person who supplied the information, or would the journalist's first obligation be to let the world know that the White House had started a war on false grounds?

Oh wait - there IS such a story. Actually, there are two such stories. The real Valerie Plame story, covered by New York Times reporter Judith Miller, is the one that SHOULD make Americans quake in their bones. Rod Lurie's "Nothing But The Truth" provides instead a thinly fictionalized version of the story. Would the real story have made a better film? Roger Ebert wrote: "In real life, Miller's reporting, accuracy and objectivity were sharply questioned, and Lurie wisely sidesteps history to focus on the underlying question: Which is more important, the principle of confidentiality, or national security?"

I'm frankly amazed by people who think that their President deserves absolutely unquestionable devotion - as long as the President is from their party. The Founding Father's clearly intended, and great leaders from Abraham Lincoln to Eisenhower have known, that the U.S. Government was specifically designed and set up to have checks and balances.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars eh...
I started out really disliking this film because it misfires so often. It kind of grew on me.

For starters, as I've said several times about films w journalists, so few... Read more
Published 1 month ago by L. Monstuart
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Well Done
I expected this movie to be a warmed over political statement, (and one that I don't particularly agree with, to boot. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Good Ole Boy
3.0 out of 5 stars Great flick!
I loved the movie! I liked the lines drawn between this movie and Valerie Plame who was outed by Cheney.
Published 4 months ago by C. Hanson
4.0 out of 5 stars nothing but the truth
a great story and i believe a true story of a person who held out for a good reason to save the truth hurting someone else.
Published 7 months ago by dorothypierce
2.0 out of 5 stars Second Rate
There's a much better movie about this same case with Sean Penn called FAIR GAME. This is like the Lifetime version of the story.
Published 11 months ago by D. Cross
4.0 out of 5 stars An effective political drama based on real life events
Based on the 2005 case where CIA agent Valerie Plame was exposed by New York Times journalist Judith Miller, "Nothing But The Truth" is a compelling political drama about what... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Larry VanDeSande
5.0 out of 5 stars Hitchcock
This was an excellent movie! I enjoyed the wonderful acting by Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren. This was interesring on how the movie Pyscho was made.
Published 13 months ago by Lavender
4.0 out of 5 stars What I saw of it was very good...
It was very good, but didn' have time to finish watching it a few days ago. Tonight came back to finish watching it, but it was no longer in a PRIME INSTANT VIDEO.
Published 13 months ago by Seed-13
2.0 out of 5 stars Ruined by language
Story good, acting well done but the frequency of inappropriate language ruined it for me. Unnecessary and ruined an otherwise good movie. Read more
Published 13 months ago by EKC
5.0 out of 5 stars a surprise ending.
this movie is riveting from beginning to the end. you are going to hate the prosecuting attorney here. Read more
Published 14 months ago by sexy dancer
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