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…

The Stoning of Soraya M., Iranian (♦♦♦♦)

Based on a true story, set in Iran in 1986, Soraya’s husband made all kind of demands to get rid of his wife and two daughters, to marry a younger woman. Soraya refused to grant him a divorce because he wasn’t going to provide alimony for her or her children. Determined to be free of his wife, Soraya’s husband seized an opportunity that arose when one of the village’s women died and the men asked Soraya to do house chores for the widow. Soraya’s husband started a rumor about his wife infidelity and ended up forcing false witnesses to provide their testimonies of Soraya’s betrayal. With enough witnesses against her, Soraya was found guilty and sentenced to death by stoning.

This movie made my blood boil. I just could not believe that that man could fabricate such lies to suit his purposes and convince everyone in town of them. That’s the power of a rumor! In this case the rumor had tragic consequences. Even her two sons were given stones to throw at her!

I thought the director of this movie was going to sugar-coat the stoning, but he didn’t shy away one bit. Those scenes are as brutal as they are real. In places where women have no rights, their very lives are in the hands of men capable of such atrocious acts.


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