Heroes in the world today are fleeting, with so many idols in the form of super heroes, extravagant knights, and political icons. The real heroes though, the regular joes doing extravagant things that have served so many people. Yet, these facts get lost to the pages of history and popular culture, which is where movies like tonight’s come in. The former Western warrior turned director Clint Eastwood is ready to tell one of those tales, in what will hopefully not be a depressing tale he often presents. Tonight, yours truly reviews yet another film, in hopes of finding the jewel in the rough. Let’s get cracking as we review:
Movie: Richard Jewell (2019)
- Decent Pace
- Strong Acting
- A Nice Blend Of Facts and Drama, mostly
- Great Writing and Monologues
- Hits From Multiple Aspects
- Emotional Cinematography
- A True Show Of Friendship
- A Little Slow At Parts
- Some Rather Blanche Tales
- Overdramatic At Parts
- Not Quite as Dramatic Or Epic Clue Hunting
Richard Jewell’s trailer paints the chance for a dark, epic tale that could be the intense paced Thriller, or the slow, detail oriented biography that is famous of this type of movie. Well, fortunately the movie found the blend of those two with a decent pace through much of the run time as you dive deeper into the tale of intense bullying. A strong acted cast leads this tale, many selling their performance as they bring the full on emotions involved with an investigation like this. These performances should be the gripping factor to pull one into the screen as they try to take the journey with Richard through his trying time. I feel that Eastwood and Ray met the challenge mostly in blending fact and drama together, making the slower paced film calm to life, but often not straying too far from a believable story.
As such, the writing is also packed with plenty of top writing moments, as monologues come in with powerful emotions to bring that heart punching power that movies have the ability to do. It’s these qualities that I feel will net most people coming to see this film, but the visuals themselves capitalize and continue to bring the momentum full circle. There are moments where the makeup, angle, and subtle use of lights really brings the most out of those moments and somehow digs deeper into the psyche without much intervention. This is true even in the other scenes that try to integrate the big picture of the story and help give you as many angles during this investigation. Piecing all of these together gives you a more complete story, almost like reading multiple articles when hot pieces of gossip come out. It’s the combination of all these components that really paints the tale of friendship, which really struck a chord with me.
As much as I liked this tale though, I’ll admit there are some parts that sort of took the quality down a bit for me. For one thing the movie does have some scenes that are mostly bloating up the run time instead of keeping the track record running. This is primarily in the beginning of Richards law enforcement career where the judgement and bullying started. Other times the other aspects needed to be fleshed out upon, helping advance characters who started out very well integrated into the movie quickly took a dive into secondary character territory, which was highly disappointing in the end. This was particularly true when it came to Olivia Wilde’s character, who in the trailers had such tenacity and then sort of fizzled out. In regards to the overdramatic moments, there are times where you can see the tale starting to go down the melodramatic pathway that modern dramas do. Some of these moments are realy cheesy, but other times the movie magic would have been welcome to help with putting more intensity into the crime. I had hoped to see more intensity in trying to help clear his name, with clever traps, thought out detective cases, and maybe even some abilities of making the FBI look like fools. It did not quite do this, instead focusing once more on the facts and realism over anything else. Again this is a strength in terms of keeping things believable, but I do wished there could have been some detective edge added to it.
Eastwood knows how to direct a drama and I was very happy to find that I did not leave out here depressed as I have seen in the past. It’s got a great heart to it, filled to the brim with the magic of friendship, determination, and what it really means to be a hero. Fantastic film with acting and great use of cinema skills, the movie will certainly be engaging to those that like biographical dramas. It’s true that it needs a little fine tuning in the fact vs dramad epartment and could get a little more exciting and complete, but overall, I was very impressed with what Eastwood put together. While not the most special effects palooza, Richard Jewell has quality that would make the trip worthwhile, but most will enjoy the film in their own homes for this one. My review scores recommends:
Movie Overall 7.0