SFF 2017 review: Risk

Risk is the latest documentary from Laura Poitras, the director of the Oscar-winning Citizenfour, a doco about famous whistleblower Edward Snowden. Risk follows a similar subject; the recent life of Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks team.


Risk is surprisingly intimate with its subject, who holds nothing back in access. The very first thing you see on screen is Julian and his colleague Sarah Harrison conducting a phone call attempting to talk with Hillary Clinton regarding an upcoming leak (a past leak now).

The trailer at the bottom of this review may make it seem like the entirety of the film is about the election and the Hillary Email kerfuffle but that’s really only a smidgen of the film toward the end.


A subject such as WikiLeaks must be handled with as much objectivity as possible and Risk makes me feel slightly confused in that field.

I feel like Poitras does attempt to keep an objective view on the matters at hand however a bias does seem inescapable. I’m not sure what that bias is but I did feel some kind of bias had snuck it’s way into the air.


Making a film like Risk and naming it Risk is somewhat comedic as the whole thing does smell of exactly that. For the filmmaker, the subject and oddly the audience. In a way, I felt I was unsafe watching Risk as it may have planted a bias in the back of my mind, where it will wait for the right moment to jump forward and possess my ideologies.

Do I have evidence of this? No.

But I have my suspicions…

… It was still an interesting film though.

3 / 5  planted biases

What did you think of Risk?

Whatever your thoughts, leave a comment below and don’t forget to like the Facebook page to keep the site going!

Risk is playing at the Sydney Film Festival again on the 15th of June at Dendy Newtown and if you want to catch tickets, you’ll want to head over to the SFF site here.

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