• Viola Davis

Tag: Viola Davis

“The First Lady” (2022)–Second to None

Three remarkable women, in The First Lady, a  Showtime mini-series (released April 17),  provided indispensable support to their husbands before and throughout their presidencies.  Eleanor Roosevelt (Gillian Anderson), Betty Ford (Michelle Pfeiffer), and Michelle Obama (Viola Davis)–all three made soul-crushing sacrifices, wearing masks of the “political wife” who stands by her man.  Almost miraculously, they achieved meaningful successes on their own, despite the political machinery determined to relegate them to merely decorative roles, a  poise...

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“Lila & Eve”–Loss Without Justice

Lila & Eve, a 2015 sleeper female vigilante thriller ,  stars Viola Davis (“How to Get Away With Murder”) as Lila and Jennifer Lopez (“Hustlers”) as Eve, The opening scene shows Lila’s 18-year-old son, Stephon (Aml Ameen), in a pool of blood from a drive-by shooting. A grief-fueled fragile mother is determined to fix her life: to bring the murderers of her son to justice so she can move on in nurturing her fourteen-year- old son. Unsure how to go on with the effort of living, partly numbed by anti-anxiety drugs, Lila joins a  support group for moms...

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“Fences”–In or Out?

  “Some people build fences to keep people out–and other people build fences to keep people in”. The film “Fences” (released Christmas Day 2016) is based on the 1987 Pulitzer Prize-winning play and screenplay by the brilliant playwright August Wilson (1945-2005). “Fences” is set in 1950’s Pittsburgh.  Troy Maxson (Denzel Washington) had been a promising baseball player in the Negro Leagues in a time before Jackie Robinson. After serving time in prison he meets Rose (Viola Davis) who believes in him and devotes her life to their family: his older...

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“Prisoners”: Kidnapping Your Mind

  This provocative film opens with a father and son hunting in the woods, the Lord’s Prayer recited in voiceover.  The viewer sees the father, Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) as a deeply religious man, a carpenter who believes in family values and the safety of his community.  When his little girl and her friend go missing on Thanksgiving Day, the world he has believed in is destroyed. “Prisoners” is a powerful tale of human nature gone awry.  What are parents capable of in their darkest moment, when their worst nightmare happens? Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) is put in...

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“The Help”– “Telling the Truth Can Be a Revolutionary Act”

Based upon the best-selling 2009 novel by Kathryn Stockett, “The Help” is a vision of a divided America that is consistent, sometimes terrifying, in its insulting, insinuating dehumanization of African Americans. This movie is also easy-to-like –problematic but ultimately winning–and has now earned a huge $154.4 million in box revenues. Skeeter (played competently by Emma Stone), a young white journalism major who has recently graduated from the University of Mississippi, has returned home to Jackson to find that Constantine (Cicely Tyson), who raised her, no longer...

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