Conspiracy film specialist Alan J. Pakula turned journalists Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein's best-selling account of their Watergate investigation into one of the hit films of Bicentennial year 1976. While researching a story about a botched 1972 burglary of Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate apartment complex, green Washington Post reporters/rivals Woodward (Robert Redford, who also exec produced) and Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman) stumble on a possible connection between the burglars and a White House staffer.
With the circumspect approval of executive editor Ben Bradlee (Jason Robards), the pair digs deeper. Aided by a guilt-ridden turncoat bookkeeper (Jane Alexander) and the vital if cryptic guidance of Woodward's mystery source, Deep Throat (Hal Holbrook), Woodward and Bernstein follow the money all the way to the top of the Nixon administration.
Despite Deep Throat's warnings that their lives are in danger, and the reluctance of older Post editors, Woodward and Bernstein are determined to get out the story of the crime and its presidential cover-up. Once Bradlee is convinced, the final teletype impassively taps out the historically explosive results.