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Sydney Pollack, Who Got Journalism

Director Sydney Pollack is has died. He made many excellent films, but the one that journalists remember best is “Absence of Malice” — a trenchant look at big-city journalism and its practitioners.

Yes, the picture was over the top in key ways. But it had a core of reality, cloaked in fiction, that went to the heart of what we do well and what we do badly. It reminded us of things we need to remember, most notably that our sources use us mercilessly to advance their own agendas, not necessarily the public good.

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