Less a study of Julian Assange and his online intelligence dumping grounds than a timeline with some character traits thrown in, We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks
is almost like the preamble rather than the full, sordid tale. Director Alex Gibney, who has taken sides before (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
), tries to present both sides. Here they are: Assange is probably a duplicitous glory-seeker who published hundreds of thousands of documents delivered by a troubled soldier named Bradley Manning, and most of the stuff WikiLeaks revealed is probably in the public interest and we’re better off knowing about it. Perhaps Gibney avoids falling decisively against Assange and for WikiLeaks because it is a little messy, but the documentary, while well-researched and featuring compelling interviews, does seem to wander a bit because of it.