Saturday, March 28, 2009

MOVIE: Doubt

Rating: Time flew by
Viewed: Tuesday, Mar. 2; Crossroads with Sheila
Rotten Tomato: 78% Mine: 80%, almost the same
EW: C+ cag: B+
Genre: Drama
Realeased: 12/12/08
PG-13 (1:44)
Directed (& written by) John Patrick Shanley
Meryl Streep (Acad Award nominee best actress)
Philip Seymour Hoffman (AcAw nominee supporting)
Amy Adams (AcAw nominee supporting)
Viola Davis (AcAw nominees supporting) ***

I had never planned to see this movie - I was nervous watching the previews (I hate the very real problem about sexual abuse concerning priests, even if it is probably just a handful) , and I've always had a....problem.....with the Catholic church. But it was dollar night, with popcorn and soda two bucks each (hey, five dollars for dinner and a movie - who can pass that up?) I'm glad I went. There's a reason why movies get Academy Award nominations. The acting was just plain superb! Viola Davis had perhaps a ten-minute part, but OH MY GOSH! I feel like I can get in front of a class of kids and act it up, but this kind of talent is just awe-inspiring. I couldn't pick out one performance and say it was better or not as good as another.

The story: Sister Aloysius (Streep) is the hard-nosed principal of a NYC parochial school in 1964. Father Flynn (Hoffman) is the middle-aged priest of the church. The two have opposing views about "keeping up with the times." Young Sister James (Adams) is a new teacher who loves teaching history to her 8th graders. She's the one who goes to the principal with things that she's noticed about Father Flynn and one of her students - a black boy who is also an altar boy.

There's never any real proof about anything in this movie, we are left to our own imaginings - as are the protagonists of the story. I've never seen the Tony-Award and Pulitzer Prize award winning play, which is said to be better, but I did enjoy this film very much. And I don't think it's FAIR to compare a play and a movie, especially when they're written by the same person. You just have to sit back and enjoy the incredible acting for an hour and three quarters. It flew by. I'm glad I saw it.

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