Fair Game (2010)



Critic Consensus: It struggles with the balance between fact-based biopic and taut political thriller, but Fair Game brims with righteous anger -- and benefits from superb performances by Naomi Watts and Sean Penn.

Movie Info

As a covert officer in the CIA's Counter-Proliferation Division, Valerie leads an investigation into the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Valerie's husband, diplomat JOE WILSON (Sean Penn), is drawn into the investigation to substantiate an alleged sale of enriched uranium from Niger. But when the administration ignores his findings and uses the issue to support the call to war, Joe writes a New York Times editorial outlining his conclusions and ignites a firestorm of … More

Rating: PG-13 (for some language)
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By: John Butterworth, Jez Butterworth, John-Henry Butterworth
In Theaters:
On DVD: Mar 29, 2011
Box Office: $9.5M
Summit Entertainment - Official Site


as Valerie Plame

as Joe Wilson

as Jim Pavitt

as Samantha Wilson

as Trevor Wilson

as Professor Badawi

as Scooter Libby

as Hammad

as Professor Badawi

as Ari Fleischer

as Karl Rove

as Steven Hadley

as Karl Rove

as Andrew Card

as Cathie Martin

as David Addington

as Mr. Tabir

as Diane Plame

as Sam Plame

as Director of CIA Oper...

as Dr. Zahraa

as Chanel Suit

as Tabir Secretary #1

as Tabir Secretary #2

as CIA Tour Leader

as CPD Agent

as Minister of Mines - ...

as Nervous Analyst #1

as Nervous Analyst #2

as CIA Analyst #1

as Nervous Dave

as Jordan Officer #1

as Mukhabarat Officer

as Hammad's Wife

as Hammad's Son

as B.U. Professor

as B.U. Student #1

as B.U. Student #2

as Iraqi Scientist #1

as Iraqi Scientist #2

as Iraqi Scientist #2

as Journalist #1

as Journalist #2

as Journalist #3

as Internal Security Of...

as Supporter #1

as Supporter #2

as Field Reporter #1

as Field Reporter #2

as Businessman #1

as Businessman #2

as Right Wing Reporter

as DC Cab Driver

as B.U. Student #2
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Fair Game

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Critic Reviews for Fair Game

All Critics (169) | Top Critics (38)

This isn't a message movie, per se, but a strong point of view comes through regardless: In the battle of principles vs. politics, politics always win.

Full Review… | April 4, 2011
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Naomi Watt delivers but the script offers a lifeless story and too many one-dimensional characters to name.

Full Review… | January 6, 2013
Big Hollywood

If the filmmakers had skimmed off some of the exposition from the first half, and tightened it up in order to get to the main part of the story faster, it would have worked a lot better.

Full Review… | September 22, 2012

Another of Participant Media's earnest, well-meaning, well-made, but rather dry efforts that definitely do their job in conveying the intended message but not so much as engaging drama.

Full Review… | February 7, 2012

Gripping real-life spy movie Fair Game, a sober and sobering account of the double-dealing of the Bush White House in the run-up to the US invasion of Iraq.

Full Review… | July 18, 2011
Movie Talk

Despite its flaws, this movie feels necessary.

Full Review… | July 14, 2011
Digital Spy

Audience Reviews for Fair Game

During the run-up to the Second Iraq War, the Bush Administration released the name of a CIA agent whose husband was critical of Bush's "evidence."
Naomi Watts and Sean Penn deliver very strong performances as Valerie Plame Wilson and Joe Wilson. Watts is believable in her vulnerable scenes, reeling from the Bush Administration's treason, and Penn brings his natural intensity to his portrayal of Joe Wilson. Both in terms of the film and the actual events, I wondered why (or why not) the Wilsons never discussed the article that led to Valerie's betrayal. Regardless of the film's reliance on actual events, the story proceeds predictably, complete with the inspirational visit to Valerie's father who dispenses age-old wisdom. The story of the Iraqi scientists is also incomplete.
Overall, carried by strong leading performances, Fair Game is not as polemic as it could be and follows a rather predictable path.

Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

"Fair Game" is not as engrossing as it should be considering its subject matter and pedigree.

The Gandiman
Tony Gandía

Super Reviewer


I am NOT a political movie fan. However, this movie was extremely interesting. This would have been a fantastic movie even if it was fiction. But, what made this story frightening is that it was true. I remember the 2003 pre-Iraq invasion media blitz to bolster public support for the war. The real-life characters in this film, heroes, dared to speak the truth about the Iraq situation in an environment of blind frenzy disguised as patriotism. The tragic story of Joe and Valerie Wilson is amazing. The movie does a fantastic job of telling their story, and showing the emotional distress, that this moment of national shame caused the Wilsons. I only wish that I could have rewritten the ending...as that Karl Rove and Scooter Libby were sent to jail for life for treason!

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

Fair Game Quotes

– Submitted by Frances H (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Frances H (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Frances H (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Alonso A (3 years ago)

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