Spotlight

November. 06,2015
Rating:
7.8
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Trailer Synopsis Cast Keywords

The true story of how The Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child abuse and the cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese, shaking the entire Catholic Church to its core.

Mark Ruffalo as  Michael Rezendes
Michael Keaton as  Walter "Robby" Robinson
Rachel McAdams as  Sacha Pfeiffer
Liev Schreiber as  Marty Baron
John Slattery as  Ben Bradlee Jr.
Stanley Tucci as  Mitchell Garabedian
Brian d'Arcy James as  Matt Carroll
Gene Amoroso as  Steve Kurkjian
Billy Crudup as  Eric Macleish
Maureen Keiller as  Eileen McNamara
child abuse
journalism
judge
florida
boston
pedophilia
court
cover-up
priest
lawyer
catholic
catholic church
catholicism
september 11 2001
investigative journalism
cardinal
christmas

Reviews

mattwilde123
2018/02/24

This was a very shocking and well made film. It is about the scandal involving a cover-up of Catholic priests molesting children in the Boston area. I was surprised with the delicate nature of the film's script and how well it was handled. It had a very solid ensemble cast which helped make the film moving and horrific in parts.I am glad that a film like this won Best Picture at the Academy Awards as it had a very important message (even if I was rooting for 'The Revenant').★★★★

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Andres Gomez
2018/02/24

Spotlight story is interesting and has a good cast which performs very well, but the feeling of the story is flat.First, they are talking about abuses to children but you feel almost the whole time that they are following the lead of any other story almost as bureaucrats. There is not much of sensitivity put into the matter.Second, they are exposing a huge case of system "missbehavior" (to say the least) in the Catholic Church hierarchy and you see how the whole city of Boston is treating this institution with great care. Then, this movie is about showing to the world how the exposition was done and the treatment to the Catholic Church is almost as exquisite as the one that has enabled this institution to hide all this cases.For gods sake! These people are criminals covering the crimes of even bigger criminals and it seems like we still cannot face them and tell them clearly and to their faces the horrible things they have tolerated and hidden.

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Reno
2018/02/24

> Uncovering the sins committed by whom the millions of people believe in.A documentary film would show the real faces of those offenders to shame them. That's the reason I desperately wanted it to be a documentary, then I would have definitely given a maximum mark. There's no complaint about this movie, but adaptation means fakes acting, fake settings and awards goes to non real achievers. Anyway, this movie kind looked a semi documentary and liked the way it was made.The movie exposed a very important scandal. If something is open for a debate in the US means, the rest of the world would follow the same route. That's where this theme was inspired by. It all begins with a group of journalists from the Boston Globe with their new editor instruct them to research on sexual abuse of children by priests. So their lead only gets bigger and puts them to recover more evidence in order to publish. How they come up with the story that shake up not only the nation, but the entire world is the remaining.A collection of bunch fine performances. There's no lead actors in this. Everyone is in the supporting roles. Out of 6, it got nominated both male and female in the category of supporting role for the Academy Awards. I am very disappointed, Mark Ruffalo's performance in 'Infinitely Polar Bear' deserved another nominee. Anyway, this 15 year old story still looks a hot topic. It was a great comeback for the director after critics assaulted him with their words for his previous film 'The Cobbler' only to show their rage on Sandler. It is a must-must see. Beware, is is not your weekend entertainer, but based on the real.8/10

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Horst in Translation (filmreviews@web.de)
2016/05/15

Very relevant and important, but not very good---"Spotlight" is an American movie from last year that runs for slightly over 2 hours and was written and directed by Tom McCarthy. It won two Academy Awards earlier this year, including the grand prize for Best Picture. And the reason for this is probably that it is about a really important subject, namely the way it was discovered by a major newspaper that pedophilia was something that existed on a larger scale in the Church, despite many attempts of the latter to keep it disclosed. Mark Ruffalo and Rachel McAdams managed Oscar nominations for their supporting performances. I cannot say I agree with either sadly. McAdams played her part well, had a couple good moments, but I don't think it was one of the best of the year in her category. Probably more of a coattail nomination, I remember it was also pretty surprising she got in. Ruffalo's nomination was no surprise, he got in at all the precursors too. But I had sometimes problems with his performance. It seem over-the-top theatrical and it had a touch of one man against the Church at times, which went entirely against the idea of the team collaboratively managing great things. I am usually a fan of Ruffalo and he has good moments here too, but I think a mix of not so good writing and perhaps not the best approach to the role may have hurt the character. Keaton, Tucci, Slattery and Schreiber are pretty much the same, good but not great, but probably on par with the two nominees. It was a team effort and nobody really stood out.In terms of the entire film, I summarized it appropriately in the title I believe. It is a very important subject and it was a strong cast making this subject work with dignity and professionalism, but I personally felt the heart was missing. And this subject certainly would have deserved to make a more emotional impact in the grand scheme of things than it did on me. The attempts by McCarthy to deliver in terms of that were something that felt rather forced than effective to me. They brought in references to the journalists' private lives and how it impacted them to some extent, but it did not feel too compelling to me to watch these and the victims also did not add as much as I hoped they would. The ending with Keaton's "Spotlight" quote was nicely done though. I also liked the way they brought in 9/11 getting in the way of disclosing the events. Overall, I believe this is an important movie that is worth watching mostly because it all happened in reality and because with the Best Picture win, it is probably now the defining film on a very contemporary and tragic occurrence of events. But I still feel it did not make the impact that it could have made and my favorite McCarthy film to this day stays "The Visitor". But I recommend "Spotlight" too of course. I would say it's nowhere near the best or worst Best Picture Academy Award winners.

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mrshev
2016/03/29

Super film---It won best film, deservedly so. This is a film that resonated with me long after I watched it. The complicated tale of the investigation of paedophile priests in Boston and the publication of it is told in riveting fashion by Tom Macarthy who does not waste a frame or a scene to anything less than the plot or character development. I never felt the running time or in any way disbelieved any of the actors in their portrayals.Keaton seems to be on a total roll at the moment and he is excellent as the head of Spotlight but the whole ensemble seemed to put in a real shift. This felt like a documentary at times and I could feel the audience around me leaning forward as each new revelation is uttered. Just brilliant.

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Larry Silverstein
2016/03/29

Stunningly Good---Brilliantly acted, directed, and written, I just found this riveting and important film to be truly exceptional. Much of it is done in a low-key style, as layer after layer of the abuse by Catholic priests and subsequent cover-up by the Boston Archdiocese as well as other powerful interests, is uncovered by the Spotlight investigative team of the Boston Globe, in the early 2000's.I haven't yet seen all the movies nominated for the Best Picture Academy Award in 2016, but I can certainly see how this one won it, as well as winning Best Original Screenplay by Tom McCarthy (who also directed) and Josh Singer.Overall, just an outstanding motion picture that I would recommend highly.

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Mr-Fusion
2016/03/26

Burns slow, but riveting to the end---Garnered awards and horrifying subject matter put aside, take a look at the movie poster for "Spotlight". It's a still image of the principal cast hovered over a cluttered desk in a small room. It's not flashy, but still an incredibly effective piece of advertising. You know in an instant that this is a journalism movie; die-hards in rolled-up shirtsleeves working all hours to unearth a national scandal. I am an absolute sucker for this.The scandal herein is the systemic cover-up of pederasty within the Catholic Church. To that end (even though a lot of the dialogue in this movie is come-from-behind startling), one line in particular jumped out at me: "They say it's just physical abuse but it's more than that, this was spiritual abuse. You know why I went along with everything? Because priests are supposed to be the good guys." This isn't just a story about the crimes committed, but there's also sensitivity towards the victims themselves. I dunno, I just found that line deeply unnerving.But when all is said and done, this movie runs on the grueling nuts-and-bolts detective work of investigative journalism; a uniformly excellent cast, great writing and tension that continues to build.Amazing stuff.9/10

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trevorj-67694
2016/03/25

It Could've Been You---I've rated almost a hundred movies and I've only ever given out six 10s on this website. I don't rave about many movies and I am tough to please when it comes to film, but this film is absolute brilliance. It is flawless. This one earns its 10 and it is one of the best films I have ever seen. Everything about this film is brilliant. The camera work is great and the score is underrated. However, what makes this film is an absolutely genius screenplay that is acted to perfection. This script will rock your world. I am not Catholic. I didn't grow up in a deeply Catholic area, but this film still affected me greatly. Everyone should see this movie for that reason. That is something that you have to see for yourself. However, I'd like to focus a little more on the technical aspects. Beyond the fact that the subject matter is heavy and extremely important to American and world culture, this movie does everything else right. The acting is absolutely phenomenal. This is particularly true for Ruffalo and McAdams. I adore the subtlety with which they both act. It is brilliant. There isn't much more to say. This film is pure brilliance from its opening frame to its closing moment. For both cinematic and cultural reasons, this is a film that every person should see.

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Miriam Se
2016/03/16

A movie that qualifies as strong meat a.k.a. be ready to digest a lot of reality and face the true face of a world unknown to people living in a happy bubble.---This movie undid something inside of me. It's that part of you that holds on to hope that people can be good, that there is hope for humanity. I knew the basics of it when I went to watch it: that it is about investigative reporters looking into a story of abuse in the catholic church. And it uncovered so much more than just that. Honestly, this movie should be seen by anyone who seeks the true face of the world. We don't live in a pink bubble of happiness. F*cked up things happen to people all the time; worst thing is when it happens to the innocent. The little ones who can't protect themselves. When they are robbed of their faith and their hope and their future. Sitting in the film theatre on the last row, I was brought to tears as in front of me a long list of places where victims spoke out was scrolling. I was both shocked and mad. I felt sorry that people can fail so miserably. "Mike Rezendes: They knew and they let it happen! It could've been you, it could've been me, it could've been any of us." Indeed. When we witness darkness and we shut up and we don't do anything about it, that's when we fail. A poet once wrote, "You can join the millions talking in the dark. Or you can stand up and scream light, out into the night." So choose to stand up. In your profession choose to eradicate the oblivion of evil. This movie is a masterpiece. From the dedication of the actors to their roles, to the script, the director and the cinematography. The score? Fantastic. Howard Shore did it again!

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mgumsley
2016/03/04

Understated rendition, maximum impact---Despite its imposing title, Spotlight is an understated movie with a methodical approach that slowly gains momentum. It clearly, confidently shows us how our most precious resource, our children, have been damaged by abuse from catholic priests. This abuse has been prevalent mostly in the United States, but it has occurred wherever there is catholicism, and the church has systematically turned a blind eye to the proceedings. Some children have been driven to suicide by this abuse.In 2001 The Boston Globe decided to investigate one priest said to be abusing a large number of children, and the ensuing investigation reveals a huge cover up, with the catholic church using its power to frighten away the globe, and lawyers refusing to reveal important knowledge, and most importantly, an ex priest who rehabilitates abused children refusing to speak to the press.The Globe realises that they are handling one of the most important stories in the history of the newspaper, and their pursuit becomes relentless, leading to a shattering conclusion.This film scooped best picture at the Oscars and it bears all the hallmarks of the ultimate winner: absolute honesty and integrity in its subject matter, a complicated story simply told and beautifully acted by its committed team of actors. Most of the Spotlight team were catholics by birth and clearly this aided the process, the same applied to the actors, with Ruffalo particularly impressive as a reporter of Portuguese stock. I also liked Stanley Tucci as a lawyer who had dealt with many of the abused children, who was at first reluctant to deal with the Globe, but is won over by their commitment to the story.Abuse of one kind or another is a daily story in the newspapers these days, when it happened on this scale in a church it is even more shocking. This film lays out the facts in the most humane way possible, and everyone involved deserves credit for this. This really is a film that surely must give some comfort to the families that suffered because of this wicked abuse.Mary Gumsley

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