The Good Shepherd

The Good Shepherd

Robert De Niro (2006)

160min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
The second directorial outing of screen legend Robert De Niro ambitiously charts the secret history of America's Central Intelligence Agency, from the beginning of the Second World War to the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961. There's little chance here for star Matt Damon to reprise his Jason Bourne-style superspy heroics in his role as Edward Wilson, a patriotic desk jockey who sacrifices everything (his marriage and perhaps even his soul) to become an automaton in this vast bureaucratic machine. Concentrating on the humdrum reality of paperwork, files and folders, Eric Roth's well-researched screenplay strips the spy movie of its glamour, while telescoping history through one man's personal tragedy. It's a bold narrative move that succeeds only fitfully - not least because De Niro's ploddingly competent direction robs the drama of the impact it deserves. Terrific supporting turns from William Hurt, John Turturro and Angelina Jolie (as Wilson's wife) add gloss, but they can't prevent the film from feeling as coldly dispassionate as its protagonist.

Summary

Fact-based drama exploring the secret history of the CIA, from the Second World War to the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961. Agent Edward Wilson's job involves leading a double life, until one day he is forced to make the terrible choice between national security and ensuring the safety of his family. Directed by and starring Robert De Niro, with Matt Damon and Angelina Jolie.

Cast & Crew

Edward Wilson Matt Damon
Clover / Margaret Russell Angelina Jolie
Sam Murach Alec Baldwin
Laura Tammy Blanchard
Arch Cummings Billy Crudup
Bill Sullivan Robert De Niro
Sen John Russell Sr Keir Dullea
Dr Fredericks Michael Gambon
Hanna Schiller Martina Gedeck
Philip Allen William Hurt
Thomas Wilson Timothy Hutton
Joseph Palmi Joe Pesci
Ray Brocco John Turturro
Director Robert De Niro
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Other Information

Language: English Colour Theatrical distributor: Universal Guidance: Violence and swearing. Available on: Available on DVD Released on: 23 Feb 2007

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