Political thrillers usually fail in straddling entertainment and credibility, but director Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity) succeeds in delivering a captivating story about dirty politics, intrigue and drama in Fair Game, a film based on the memoir titled Fair Game: My Life As A Spy, My Betrayal By The White House by ex-CIA agent Valerie Plame.
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Naomi Watts stars as Valerie Plame (to whom she also bears an uncanny resemblance), who finds her cover blown by White House officials in retribution for a 2003 New York Times op-ed piece written by her husband, Joseph Wilson (Sean Penn), which stated that the Bush administration tampered with intelligence to justify the invasion of Iraq. With her identity leaked, the safety of her family and her sources is threatened. Both Watts and Penn are in top form here, delivering riveting performances as a couple who find themselves paying a hefty price for truth.
If political intrigue and a heavy dose of reality jolt are what you’re looking for, Fair Game will not disappoint. Thanks to its taut pacing and gripping narrative, you’ll find yourself wanting to know more about the inner workings of covert intelligence operations and underhand governmental dealings in our highly combustible world today.
In the wake of the WikiLeaks fiasco, suddenly nothing’s too incredulous to believe. A must-watch for those who enjoy political thrillers. Tip: for those who find themselves needing more closure after watching the film, search “Valerie Plame: Congressional Testimony 3.16.06” on YouTube.