Snapshots - #35: Marshall, American Made, The Glass Castle

The movies…
Marshall (♦♦♦♦): Black lawyer Thurgood Marshall (Chadwick Boseman) is entrusted by the NCAAP to defend a black chauffeur (Sterling K. Brown) in Greenwich, CT, who has been accused of rape by his white employer. As Marshall is not allowed by the judge as legal counsel because he doesn't hold a CT license, he engages, reluctantly on both sides, the service of Jewish insurance lawyer Sam Friedman (Josh Gad), whom, with Marshall's help, will have to acquire criminal defense experience in a matter of months. But as the case is tried in court, it becomes evident that it is anything but cut and dry. Powerfully acted by Chadwick Boseman, Josh Gad, and Sterling K. Brown in the leading roles, Marshall treads a fine line between inspiring legal thriller and drama. On both counts it delivers in spades. Based on a true story, with race and bigotry fueling public opinion, before the apogee of the Civil Rights Movement, this accused black man is doomed from the start. A full century…

Vicky Cristina Barcelona (♦♦♦♦)

American friends Vicky (Rebecca Hall) and Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) decide to spend a summer in Barcelona. There, they meet free spirited painter Juan Antonio (Javier Bardem), who proves to be more than either one of them can handle. After a brief affair in Oviedo, Vicky, who is engaged, falls in love with Juan Antonio but ends up marrying her fiancé. Cristina, on the other hand, has a longer love relationship with Juan Antonio and they live together for a while, until Maria Elena (Penelope Cruz), Juan Antonio’s ex-wife, re-appears in his life and Cristina must come to terms with living with them both.

This movie is like a breeze, very light and free flowing. The story flows easily, at times funny, but thoughtfully nonetheless. It is not a movie to overanalyze, just to enjoy. Penelope’s performance is worth your time. She was born to interpret the role of Maria Elena; she seems at ease both in English and Spanish, and even those dialogue transitions are funny. Even Javier Bardem or Scarlett Johansson’s acting, whose I don’t particularly like, are spot on here. Watch this film; you won’t regret it!


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