Starting Sunday, June 24. writer Aaron Sorkin takes a crack at showing what being a journalist is really like — while still keeping in interesting — with HBO’s new series, “The Newsroom.”
“His Girl Friday” (1940): “The Front Page” has been filmed several times, but this variation that makes the newspaper tale a romantic comedy — thanks to the great battle of the sexes between Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell — arguably is the most engaging.
“Ace in the Hole” (1951): Also known as “The Big Carnival,” director Billy Wilder’s cynical drama casts a fearless Kirk Douglas as a down-on-his-luck reporter who tries to exploit a cave-in.
“Sweet Smell of Success” (1957): It doesn’t unfold in a literal newsroom, but this searing drama of a cruel columnist (Burt Lancaster) who manipulates a desperate publicist (Tony Curtis) must be on any list of great newspaper dramas.
“All the President’s Men” (1976): Maybe the most thrilling newspaper drama yet made is a true story, as anyone who knows the name Watergate knows, with Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman as relentless reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein.
“Network“ (1976): Thirty-six years later, critics and journalists still marvel at the prescience of writer Paddy Chayefsky – who yielded Oscar-winning roles for Faye Dunaway and Peter Finch — about the then-future of TV news.
“Absence of Malice” (1981): The target (Paul Newman) of a leaked story cleverly evens the score with those who smeared him, including the main reporter (Sally Field), in director Sydney Pollack’s very smart drama.
“Broadcast News” (1987): Writer-director James L. Brooks proves he knows his stuff about the business in this superb comedy-drama about a love triangle (William Hurt, Holly Hunter, Albert Brooks) in a Washington network bureau … and also about much more.
“State of Play” (2009): This underrated Americanization of an acclaimed British miniseries boasts strong work by Russell Crowe as a veteran reporter investigating an old pal (Ben Affleck), a politician whose mistress has died suspiciously.