Coming to theatres tomorrow, Friday, March 1:
JOSEPH PULITZER: VOICE OF THE PEOPLE
Mill Valley 2018
Cleveland, Hot Springs Doc, Thin Line, Sedona, Sebastopol Doc, Atlanta Jewish, New York Jewish
The rags-to-riches story of the Hungarian immigrant turned American media giant.
Known to modern audiences for the journalism award that bears his name, Joseph Pulitzer had a transformative impact on the fourth estate, as detailed in Oren Rudavsky’s well-researched biographical profile. Pulitzer, a Hungarian Jew, emigrated to the US at the age of 17 in 1864, soon made his way to St Louis, and found a job at a local newspaper. Over time, he moved into publishing, acquiring first the St Louis Post-Dispatch and later the New York World, increasing circulation by appealing to a broad readership, championing progressive causes, and challenging powerful figures, including politicians and rival publisher William Randolph Hearst, with whom he engaged in a series of escalating battles of sensationalism to compete for headlines and readership. While the film takes on a somewhat old-fashioned feel with its excessive narration and re-enactments, it does smartly come at a time when journalism is shamefully under fire by the nation’s most powerful elected official, imparting it with a topicality and urgency that makes it a worthwhile watch.