A new review from The Movie Snob.
Spotlight (A*). It’s time to try to catch up on at least a few Oscar-bait movies, and this is the one I sought out today. It is a terrific movie but a painful and even sickening experience. That’s because it is about the Catholic clergy sex-abuse scandal that became headline news in early 2002. More specifically, it is about a handful of reporters who worked for the Boston Globe’s “Spotlight” project and who did the investigative reporting necessary to write the stories that finally forced the Catholic Church to confront the scandal. The movie features fine performances by Michael Keaton (Birdman), Mark Ruffalo (Begin Again), Liev Schreiber (The Painted Veil), and even Rachel McAdams (The Family Stone), who is not usually one of my favorites. I put an asterisk on the grade only to note that my opinion in this case is very much contingent on how strictly the filmmaker stuck with the facts, and I am in no position to make that call. Assuming director and co-writer Tom McCarthy (Win Win, The Visitor, The Station Agent) stuck closely to the facts, I think this movie is a very impressive achievement. If he didn’t, my opinion of the movie would change quite a bit.