Despite its unmemorable title, “State of Play” is a thoroughly engrossing newspaper thriller that explores new and old journalism in the context of a stop-the-presses political scandal.

Starring Russell Crowe, perfectly cast as a world-weary veteran investigative reporter for the Washington Globe, and Rachel McAdams, as the young blogger who learns the ropes from an old pro, “State of Play” is a suspenseful adult thriller that mourns the decline of newspaper journalism.

The movie also stars Ben Affleck as the congressman at the center of the scandal and Helen Mirren as the paper’s managing editor.

Also noteworthy is the soundtrack, which features Great Big Sea, Clint Mansell and Creedence Clearwater Revival. CCR’s wistful, melancholy “Long As I Can See the Light” plays as the final credits roll.

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