Flash Movie Review: Spotlight

He would be the perfect candidate for a television game show, where the contestants guess the person’s occupation. The reason being no one would guess what he did for a living. With a physical shape more akin to a fireplug; he smoked cigarettes, drank and had a Napoleon complex. In other words, he was aggressive to compensate for his short stature. I was never comfortable around him; he would simply bark orders at everyone, barely hiding his mean streak that simmered just below the surface. Do you want to take a guess at his job title? He was a gym teacher; I hesitate to use the words physical education because he did not know much about health or the human body. There were classes where he would just throw a bunch of basketballs out into the gymnasium and tell us to shoot baskets. I think he only did this so he could sit in his office that had two windows covered with metal grates. If any students knew what he was doing in there they never shared their information. I never understood how this man kept his job. He would throw basketballs at our heads or body; in fact I know I must have mentioned this before, but he put one student up against the wall and kept throwing balls at his head while a majority of the students in the bleachers sat and laughed. How could a school system keep such a person in a position of authority who acted like this, like a bully.    INVESTIGATIVE reporters from the Boston Globe discovered a pattern of abuse taking place in their city, but no one seemed to be aware of it; or were they just not saying anything? This film festival winning drama was based on a true story. The actors assembled were all so equally terrific that I could not say one of them was the main star. There was Mark Ruffalo (Now You See Me, The Avengers franchise) as Mike Rezendes, Rachel McAdams (The Vow, Midnight in Paris) as Sacha Pfeiffer, Michael Keaton (Batman franchise, White Noise) as Walter “Robby” Robinson and Liev Schreiber (Defiance, Pawn Sacrifice) as Marty Baron. The script being crisply clean without any manipulations played out as a dramatic, suspenseful thriller. There was never a dull moment; every scene mattered and offered a piece to the puzzle the reporters were trying  to put together. I do want to say I was impressed with Michael Keaton’s performance because this role was such a contrast to his role in Birdman, yet he was equally as prominent. Everything worked in this biographical film from the direction to the acting to the action. Too bad it had this true story available to be turned into a movie; but I am glad they made it because not only is it a major topic, this movie version will be a major player during the award ceremonies.


4 stars




About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on November 20, 2015, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. tpcosgrove1@comcast.net

    Hello Jordan,

    It was amazing. Everyone I have spoken to who has seen it had the same experience—the audience clapped when it was over! Happened at our showing too. Hope all is well.


  2. “Too bad it had this true story available to be turned into a movie. . .”

    Perhaps I missed something, but I don’t really follow this bit. Either case, I can’t wait to see Spotlight. It just sounds terrific. Fabulous review, as per usual. 🙂

  3. Wow! I’m blown away. This is a movie well worth watching.

  4. Great! Another movie to add to my “must see” list.

  5. YAY a four star movie! It sounds very compelling.

  6. Excellent movie and perhaps not surprising when it comes from one of the actors who starred in season five of The Wire, this is an important movie yet I see little in the way of talk of it, which is a shame as it deserves to be shown to everyone.

    • You are so right; this was such a powerful film that played out like a thriller, yet it doesn’t seem to have a lot of traction. I am glad you too reacted in a positive way to this movie. Thank you for the comments.

  7. Thanks to Netflix, I finally saw this movie so I thought I would come back and re-read your review of it. I thought it was a fantastic movie. The performances were top notch with the entire cast acting at the top of their game. I also really liked the script as it found that balance between all dialogue mattering but maintaining authenticity. Using the perspective of the journalists was a powerful way to tell this important story and I thought it was very effective. My husband was less enamoured. He felt it was lacking in punchily dramatic moments but I felt that was one of its successes. It showed how the work done was meticulous and plodding because the layers of abuses of power and corruption were so dense. It added to the authenticity I thought. And there were plentiful moments of smaller drama. I think it’s a film everyone should see.

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