‘The Martha Mitchell Effect’ Trailer Teases the Documentary on the Watergate Whistleblower!! Check It Out!!

Netflix is exploring the life and lasting impact of the always bombastic Martha Mitchell in their latest documentary The Martha Mitchell Effect. A new trailer is out, which teases how the “Mouth of the South” drew the ire of the Nixon Administration and faced extreme gaslighting and slander in her efforts to take down the president in the wake of the Watergate Scandal. The short made the rounds during Sundance‘s virtual festival this year to strong reviews, and now it’s coming to the streamer on June 17.

The trailer shows the rise and fall of a woman who was once the talk of the town in D.C. Mitchell, the wife of U.S. Attorney General John Mitchell, began her time in Washington as a political gossip, making the rounds on talk shows to spread the word about what she’d overheard from her husband and his colleagues. Then-President Richard Nixon wasn’t a fan, preferring to keep everything close to his chest. Tensions didn’t come to head though until Watergate rocked America. Mitchell, unwilling to stay quiet on such a blatant show of corruption, vehemently spoke out against Nixon, becoming the first person to call for his resignation. In response, the White House did everything to silence her, accosting her, abusing her, and publicly slamming her as mentally ill. At one point, she was even fearful she would be killed.

When it was uncovered that Nixon was indeed involved in the scandal, Mitchell instead became vindicated and was hailed as a visionary, though she was ultimately forgotten by many. Moreover, she became the face and the name behind the titular Martha Mitchell effect, a case in which someone is wrongly attributed with a mental illness when speaking about true events. The doc recounts her tragic tale in her own words and once again shines a light on the woman who, at least in the eyes of Tricky Dick himself, brought down the corrupt Nixon Administration.

The Martha Mitchell Effect hails from Anne Alvergue and Debra McClutchy, the latter of whom made her directorial debut. Alvergue has mostly stayed on the side of film editing, working on Bully. Coward. Victim. The Story of Roy Cohn and Love, Gilda, though she also helmed the 2000 documentary short Nightlight. McClutchy, meanwhile, has mostly been featured as a producer or crew member with her latest work being for The Booksellers and A Body of Language.

Here’s the official synopsis for the documentary:

She was once as famous as Jackie O. And then she tried to take down a President. The Martha Mitchell Effect is an archival documentary portrait of the unlikeliest of whistleblowers: Martha Mitchell, a Republican cabinet wife who was gaslighted by the Nixon Administration to keep her quiet. It offers a female gaze on Watergate through the voice of the woman herself. From directors Anne Alvergue and Debra McClutchy.

The Martha Mitchell Effect releases on Netflix on June 17. Check out the trailer below for a peek at Mitchell’s fight to be heard amidst the constant gaslighting of the White House.

via Collider

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