Premise: Taking place in 1965 after president LBJ (Tom Wilkinson) supposedly “ended” segregation, Martin Luther King (David Oyelowo, fresh off his Oscar snub) plans a protest march to get equal voting rights for African-Americans, starting in super racist junkpile of a city Selma, Alabama. It’s a very emotionally charged, important film about a rough time in this country’s history. It also solidifies my mindset that, much like Arkansas, just never go to Alabama. For every charming Forest Gump that lives there, there’s also 100 guys with confederate flag stickers on their pickup truck window. And I mean in 2015, mind you. Hey, you dumb hicks, you lost the war 150 years ago. GET OVER IT.
-I appreciate a biopic/period piece movie that is focused more on an event or short time period rather than the protagonist’s entire life. If we were watching young MLK growing up in poverty-stricken Atlanta, learning life lessons from his proud mother, I would have rolled my eyes. Selma is sharp and focused, and highlights a very important situation in MLK’s life, not just generically covering his entire life. You can get so many more details and rich elements to the story when you do it this way.
-It also didn’t really feel like a biopic, it felt more like it was trying to make a statement. In other words, it technically kind of was Oscar bait, but it totally wasn’t Oscar bait. And judging by the Oscar nominations that came out this morning, the Oscar voters noticed that, and barely nominated it for anything. But Theory of Everything, the standard biopic about a witty disabled person which didn’t offer anything other than an informative timeline of a guy’s life, got like seven nominations. (coughs into hand) Whatever.
-Good performances all around from Oyelowo, Wilkinson, Tim Roth, all the supporting dudes, etc. It’s a well made movie with good acting.
-Definitely got misty eyed at a few parts. The disregard for compassionate human life should make you feel something, you know. It’s very much a movie where you leave with an “ignorant people suck” thought in your head.
-I also liked how it highlighted the positive aspects of what MLK was doing, but didn’t focus so much on some sort of classic hero vs. villain storyline. The evil sheriff and the evil governor got their establishing scenes, and then the film more focused on explaining MLK’s thought process rather than point out cartoonish villainy.
-I don’t know, the pacing is a little off at times?
-She didn’t really bring the movie down, because she’s only in it for about 5 minutes, but seeing Oprah is always distracting for me. I don’t like Oprah. AND TO BE FAIR, one of her two scenes involved her yelling up to the sky with her arms wide open IN SLOW MOTION. That’s a very Oprah scene.
-I liked all the FBI logging documentation that kept popping up throughout the movie, because it kind of created a sense of paranoid dread over it all, but then it ended up not really being used for anything. I think it was just random flavor? I would have rather seen it put to better use.
Final Thoughts: It’s kind of an important movie about an important thing, you guys. Definitely worth seeing.
8.5 out of 10