Journalism in action

Movie Review Blog

By: Kyle Casey, Staff Writer

As the season of award-winning films heats up, there is one film that has managed to stand out in a crowded field thanks to flawless execution.

“Spotlight” earned little hype prior to its release, but has now solidified itself as the movie of the year so far. Centering on the 2001 Boston Globe investigation into the Catholic Church’s child molestation issues in Boston, the film is an edge-of-your-seat journalistic thriller.

The Spotlight team for the Boston Globe is a group of four incognito journalists who dive into and investigate groundbreaking material from a distance. The crew relentlessly pursues the truth, while also maintaining their cover throughout the process.

While it does not benefit from a rather slow, uneventful start, the story begins to pick up pace once the investigation begins, and doesn’t miss a beat during the final two thirds of the film.

Led by exceptional performances from Mark Ruffalo and Michael Keaton, as well as strong support from Rachel McAdams, the movie is perfectly cast, with all three effortlessly taking on new and challenging roles.

It is rare that a journalism movie hits home with a wide range of audiences, but “Spotlight” does. The endless pursuit to uncover the truth by the Spotlight team throughout the film gives this movie the feeling of a thriller.

There is no blood, no violence, no peril for the protagonists, however the twists, turns and high-intensity scenes lead to heart-racing journalistic cinema for viewers.

The script of the film reads with ease, and the cast nails each and every line. Standing above the rest is Ruffalo’s performance, as he fully engulfs himself in the role and provides the widest range of emotions of any of the cast members.

It is hard to ever deem any movie a “perfect” film, but in a year headlined by an endless slew of very-good-but-not-great films, “Spotlight” is the first great film of 2015. From prime acting, to a masterful script, to a surprising amount of thrill, “Spotlight” resonates as the type of film that does not fully sink in until a few hours after its completion. “Spotlight” gives viewers the precious yearning for more that many movies fail to achieve.

As it stands right now, “Spotlight” is comfortably in first place for Best Picture at the 2016 Academy Awards.

I give this film 9.75 out of 10 stars.

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