Official Secrets

Official Secrets

Gavin Hood (2018)

111min
15 Certificate
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Review

Our Score
Keira Knightley stars as Katharine Gun, a resolute British intelligence analyst in this dramatisation of events in the run-up to 2003's Iraq War. In the UK's GCHQ monitoring station an email from America's National Security Agency is circulated, requesting that the Brits help dig up some dirt the US could use to blackmail UN Security Council members into voting through a resolution authorising an attack on Saddam Hussein. Gun is so outraged by this request that she leaks the email in a valiant but doomed attempt to stop the conflict, and is charged under the Official Secrets act. This has ramifications for her livelihood, her Kurdish-Turkish husband's ongoing asylum application, the journalists breaking the story and the lawyers defending her. Evidently, there's dramatic potential here, but with so much plot to explain, the human element of the story gets rather crowded out in favour of spy movie-type suspense. Knightley though, brings genuine fire to her character's principled stand, and her inspiring commitment persuades us this historical footnote is definitely worth remembering.

Cast & Crew

Katharine Gun Keira Knightley
Martin Bright Matt Smith
Peter Beaumont Matthew Goode
Ed Vulliamy Rhys Ifans
Yasar Gun Adam Bakri
Roger Alton Conleth Hill
Shami Chakrabarti Indira Varma
Ken Macdonald Jeremy Northam
James Welch John Heffernan
Fiona Bygate Monica Dolan
Elizabeth Wilmhurst Tamsin Greig
Yvonne Ridley Hattie Morahan
Ben Emmerson Ralph Fiennes
Director Gavin Hood
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Entertainment OneGuidance: Swearing, a sex scene.Released on: 18 Oct 2019