Is truth at risk?
The director of the Oscar-winning film “The Fog of War” takes on the CIA in his latest “Wormwood.”
“The fact that we know about truth and pursue truth, gives us a modicum of dignity,” Morris said on “Salon Talks” when discussing “Wormwood,” a six-part Netflix docudrama, starring Peter Sarsgaard that explores the true story behind the death of U.S. scientist Frank Olson.
Morris has a track record of examining hard truths in some of America’s most trusted institutions, including the judicial system, the press and the military. Despite documentaries being widely considered a truthful medium, Morris warned against such pre-conceptions. According to Morris, the best documentaries (including his own) “examine the question of what is true and what is false.” “They don’t necessarily give you truth on a platter, but they allow you to consider how we arrive at truth, how we search for truth,” Morris said.
“Wormwood” blends elements of actuality and fictional reenactments to explore the limits of our historical knowledge and just how far we’re willing go in search of the truth. The story follows Olson’s son on his 60-year quest to uncover the true circumstances surrounding his father’s mysterious death.
After 22 years of the CIA denying any involvement, it was forced to admit spiking Olson’s glass with LSD right before his death. Furthermore, the family believes that the CIA’s role was an even more active one, and allege that the agency murdered Olson because he knew too much.
Watch the clip above to hear Morris talk about the state of documentary and truth today.Tune into SalonTV's live shows, "Salon Talks" and "Salon Stage," daily at noon ET / 9 a.m. PT and 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT, streaming live on Salon and on Facebook.