Spotlight Review

Spotlight is a film that will certainly make you think about a lot of things and might change your opinions on certain subjects.

Although this film is based on real events and things that actually happened all around the world sometimes when it is seen on a film rather than in the news it hits home more. This Oscar nominated film will go down as one of the best investigative news dramas ever and certainly deserves all the praise it has been getting. But the big question is, what makes this film so good to watch?


Films that are based on a true story can be difficult to do as the audience should know the outcome, however from start to finish you are hooked and the way the last word is delivered is phenomenal and beautifully crafted. It is a riveting movie and whenever a discovery is made you could hear a gasp from the audience, mostly because of the horrible topics that the film focuses on. These are the most poignant scenes when the abused survivors have to relive the events and are encouraged to go further and in to more detail about what happened to them.

Tom McCarthy produces one of the best directorial efforts because he makes sure it stays focused on what is important to the story, there is no ‘Hollywood’ to this film, no sexy costumes, no romantic subplots and no pointless action scenes that some people need to keep them interested. We learn just enough about the characters to make them real but not enough to want to know about their side dramas. It is very straightforward, the actors wear every day clothes and the offices are just like one that a lot of people go into every day. So the fact that there are no unspectacular visuals makes the film even better.

Each person in the story feels authentic and every scene seems important and the cast does an outstanding job in achieving this. Mark Ruffalo is the standout for me and he deserves his Oscar nomination, the way he expresses himself with his words and his mannerisms is encapsulating. But the rest of the cast are very close in terms of performance with Rachel McAdams bringing strong responsibilities and sensitivity to her role as well as Liev Schrieber and Stanley Tucci making a lasting impression despite little screen time. Michael Keaton was amazing in Birdman and his performance in this is very close as his characters determination, frustration and redemption is delivered with precision.

Spotlight feels like an Oscar winner and is one of the most important films of the year and will make a lot of people realise what we are losing in print journalism as everything is going digital. The loss of investigative journalism could be a real problem in the future. The final point that has to be made is how devastating it is to see the name of your town after the final scene.

9 out of 10.

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