Edward Snowden

Laura Poitras zeroes in on Julian Assange and WikiLeaks in the elusive, unsettling 'Risk'

Laura Poitras zeroes in on Julian Assange and WikiLeaks in the elusive, unsettling 'Risk'

Laura Poitras’ “Risk” is hardly the first feature film to take on Julian Assange, the elfin WikiLeaks mastermind who has spent the past decade exposing powerful secrets and cultivating his notoriety on the world stage. He has been addressed in several prior documentaries, notably Alex Gibney’s “We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks,” and was even played by a platinum-haired Benedict Cumberbatch in the little-seen Hollywood drama “The Fifth Estate.”

But Poitras, one of the most intrepid and incisive cinematic chroniclers of the post-9/11 world (“My Country, My Country,” “The Oath”), is the first filmmaker to have really locked Assange in her camera’s sights. Much like...

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