Political commentators seem to feel that this All the President's Men will have a far-reaching political impact this year. I'd be more inclined to believe it if the film affected a provocative emotional tone. Pakula is just too cool under the collar.
Pakula was clearly talented from the moment he lensed his first feature, but like so many other New Hollywood icons, nationwide recognition didn't come until he took on the story of one of the great con jobs on the American people, the Watergate scandal.
The opening of the film, with Woodward (Robert Redford) and Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman) first stumbling over the story, is involving and sometimes exciting, but from then on it degenerates into confusion and repetition.