Flash Movie Review: Concussion

It still can have disastrous effects and doesn’t make things better, but at least there were no ill intentions associated with it. As part of my banter during my classes I do public service announcements, a portion of it is listing any product recalls. There have been some that were not due to human error; for example, a bad circuit board installed into a motor vehicle or a food item that did not receive all of its ingredients due to a glitch during the automated manufacturing process. I understand things can happen. The issue I have is when individuals willingly keep the status quo though they know it could be dangerous for the consumer. Listen to these product recalls I have previously announced in class: a paper lantern that could catch on fire because the votive candle holders were too close to the lamp’s sides or how about the children’s swing set where the seats hung too low, causing kids to scrape their legs on the ground when swinging. You are telling me no one bothered to inspect the product before selling it? It has been drummed into all of our heads that time is money; no one wants to spend a lot of time on something if it affects the bottom line. I find it sad and miss the old days (listen to me) when people cared about their products and even other people. This is why I was so taken aback by this drama.    FORENSIC neuropathologist Dr. Bennett Omalu, played by Will Smith (I Am Legend, Hancock), worked at the coroner’s office in Pittsburgh. When the corpse of one of the Pittsburgh Steeler’s star football players arrived, Dr. Omalu could not understand why such a relatively young person had suffered such ailments and was now dead. It was a mystery he was determined to solve. This film festival winning sports film played partially like a thriller. Based on a true story I have to give credit to Will Smith. The character Will portrayed was such a gentle, down to earth man that one just wanted to root for him. Maybe the accent was weak but Will made this role one of his best performances I have ever seen. With Alec Baldwin (The Departed, 30 Rock-TV) as Dr. Julian Bailes and Albert Brooks (Drive, Defending Your Life) as Dr. Cyril Wecht, the supporting cast did a fine job with their characters even though they were not written with much depth to them. There were a couple of scenes that felt forced, where the writers wanted to inject an element of suspense; they were only a distraction for me. On the other hand I will say as the pieces of this mystery were being discovered there was one particular scene that was powerful and put everything into place for me. After seeing this picture I honestly cannot imagine a parent, who has children playing in some type of sports activity, not questioning their decision to allow their children’s participation.


3 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 December 30, 2015, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

  1. A little overdramatized, but a good story and Smith hasn’t been this good in a while. Great review Joltz.

  2. Thanks for the review! I had been wondering how this movie would be.

  3. My best friend has a child who has had three concussions while playing high school football. I hope she doesn’t see this movie. Thankfully, her son is a senior and football season is over and he’s not enlisted to play college football. Thank you for the review, but I think I’ll not recommend this to my friend, she’d probably freak out. However, I’ll probably end up watching it at some point. 🙂

  4. Thanks for the review. I will list it on my movies to see.

  5. very well said – curious to see this movie. happy new year!

  6. I wondered how Smith would do with the accent. He’s such a comedic actor it’ll be good to see him play a serious role. I’ll wait for Redbox but I’m anxious to see it. My son suffered a concussion years ago in a car wreck and the doctors compared it to a football injury and called it a ‘bell ringer.’ I guess they can only have a certain number of these before it becomes dangerous. It was scary…we had the same conversation over and over and over again for several hours while he was in the hospital. Doctor’s said it was pretty typical. It went like this:

    Son: Where’s my car?
    Me: You weren’t in your car, you were in John’s car.
    Son: Is Justin Okay?
    Me: Justin wasn’t with you.
    Son: Did the cops find the pot?
    Me: Um. What pot?
    Son: Where’s my car?
    Me: You weren’t in your car….

    • Wow, let me say I hope you don’t get too upset watching this film since you lived through a concussion. I do hope all is well with your son and appreciated you sharing the exchange you had with him after the accident. Thank you for the comments; it is a pleasure meeting you.

  7. Good review. I enjoyed the beginning of this movie, but found the second part and the ending weak. I also found Will Smith’s performance very compelling, so compelling in fact, that I really think he deserves an Academy Award nomination.

  8. Well I will likely not see the movie until later this year – but it is on my list.
    I am glad my boys only played one short season of peewee football – and then lax with helmets – but In hindsight I would have been more protective with the banging sports.
    However – I have seen a few big falls with high school basketball players – and the head hitting the ground freaks me out – and you can hear me In some video footage – but I know the damage that can happen – and when I used to teach art – I always talked with students about why fighting is so bad – and how they can really get hurt or permanently injure another person.
    Side note – we saw an ad for boxing come on and after the knock out they raised the champion’s arms – while the other guy was out cold- and my husband said “what a double standard we have”

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