After graduating from Harvard, Bryan Stevenson heads to Alabama to defend those wrongly condemned or those not afforded proper representation.
One of his first cases is that of Walter McMillian, who is sentenced to die in 1987 for the murder of an 18-year-old girl, despite evidence proving his innocence. In the years that follow, Stevenson encounters racism and legal and political manoeuverings as he tirelessly fights for McMillian’s life.
Buntu – A moving true story of the noble struggles of lawyer Bryan Stevenson (Michael B Jordan) and activist Eva Ansley (Brie Larson) to find justice for inmates wrongfully convicted and sentenced to death row. Fresh from Harvard law school, and having turned down lucrative opportunities, Bryan is plunged into the racially charged legal system of Alabama by reopening one of the most controversial cases. The case of Walter McMillian (Jamie Fox) is deeply divisive and pits the small Black community of Monroeville against the might of the district attorney’s office. A story of hope, courage, and triumph of the human spirit.
The Chairman – I was pretty hyped about this movie after seeing the trailer in mid-2019, it seemed like the perfect Oscar bait given the current political climate. Unfortunately, while there are no glaring flaws to speak of, the movie itself lacks something that would put it in the conversation for any plaudits.
I put this lack of “something” down to the writing/dialogue. Despite some fine if not exceptional acting the dialogue often rings hollow when dealing with topics like race and prison reform.
The movie beats you with its agenda of an anti-death penalty narrative, which I personally agree with, but it is so heavy-handed that it distracts from the story.
There are distinctive emotional highs, however that is dragged down by just plain sloppiness. Watch this when you have a chance, but don’t lose any sleep over missing it.
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