I was really looking forward to this film as I had heard all the hype and obviously seen the nominations. I read one review asking whether it was the film or the subject that got nominated. I’m going to sit on the fence a little bit and say yes and no. This is a good film with a very interesting subject performed well by all involved.
I think whoever made the trailer did a great job as it really grasps you and takes hold. The lines in the trailer are far less powerful in the main feature. I did enjoy the film, but I think it lacked the power that such a subject should bring. That maybe because the characters are based on real people who were very business like in the way they dealt with the story. I just felt there was something missing?
This is the story of the Catholic church allowing priests to abuse children and covering up the abuse. This was not a small story and was a sickening tale of men taking advantage of children and ruining their lives and getting away with it. It was the job of the spotlight group to uncover the secret for the Boston Globe Newspaper. They didn’t realise how big the story would be? The numbers are truly horrifying.
Mark Ruffalo is the best part of the film with a great deal of energy and passion. You really feel his anger at what he is uncovering. You really feel that he feels their pain as he talks to victims of abuse. You also feel the conflict inside of him as his faith is shaken by the revelations. Michael Keaton is also very good in his role although his character is far more calculating in his approach. He has to think about the bigger picture. It’s a shame you do not see how his actions years earlier have now affected him. Rachel McAdams is also on fine form as she plays the softer member of the group. She battles with her faith and holds the burden of destroying her nan’s belief in the Catholic Church. You can see her empathy for the victims and her will to reveal the truth. Lieve Schreiber plays the part of the head of the paper who is methodical in his work and shows very little emotion, but is determined to get the right story.
Overall this is a good film with a topic that should bring a great deal of emotion. I wouldn’t have made it an Oscar nominee as I think there are better films out there. It’s also a shame that you do not see the priests brought to justice for what they have done. I think the characters are very measured and determined to get the story. This comes across as a lack of passion for the cause. It’s not a film that will blow your mind and considering how big this was, it really should. It was a good watch, but not outstanding.
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