A real-life cyber-thriller with real-life consequences, Alex Gibney's We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks is a riveting and revelatory documentary that plays out on the ground in Melbourne, London, Baghdad, Stockholm, Reykjavík, and Washington - and everywhere in the thrumming realms of the Internet.
It is the story of Julian Assange, who first ran afoul of the law as a teenager in Australia, charged with hacking into the computer systems of a Canadian telecom company and the U.S. Air Force. In 2006, he launched WikiLeaks, setting out to "shift regime behavior" by releasing classified documents and exposing governments and corporations the world over.
He was a self-styled "transparency radical" - believing that the truth should be out there for all to see, that secrets lead to lies, to oppression, to the compromise of democracy.
And Bradley Manning, a U.S. Army private assigned to an intel unit in Iraq, believed in WikiLeaks, too. So much so that in 2009, he proceeded to release thousands and thousands of documents - a video of a Baghdad helicopter strike in which Reuters journalists, Iraqi civilians, and two children were killed by U.S. gunships; top secret State Department and Pentagon dossiers and e-mail streams - to Assange's site.