Movie Review: Selma (2014)

selma

As I teased/promised yesterday in a tiny post that I would review this here movie. And Ya know what, I am a man of my word and shall therefore deliver a review.

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to… “Selma”.

This movie follows civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (David Oyelowo) in one of the biggest periods of his life. As he is trying to make sure there are true equal voting rights for black people, he plans to start a giant march between Selma and Montgomery (Sidenote: Both towns are in the state of Alabama) as a sort of protest. And then drama. The story not only touches on the bigger aspects with the whole black rights thing, but it even explores a little bit of Dr. King’s family life and the relationship between and his wife. The story also decides to show you every terrible thing that happened to the people involved in the protests. What I am trying to say is that this movie got a lot of balls in the air at the same time. And I do think that it manages to juggle them perfectly. The story is full of excellent drama and it never feels like it is a “Ooo, white guilt” movie, it actually delves into all of the issues at the time in a very professional and superbly well-presented manner. I also like how the movie doesn’t present Dr. King as a flawless and god-like man, but actually presents him as human. It’s not always easy to watch, but I still thought the story was great!

Like I said, the character of Martin Luther King (jr) is humanized in this movie and is not presented as a god among men, but as a man with a really good heart which is kind of awesome. And holy fuckin’ shit, David Oyelowo gives us an incredible performance as the good Dr. I’m not joking, this is one of the best performances of last year. Carmen Ejogo as his wife was also terrific. A lot of great acting in this movie actually. Tom Wilkinson, Giovanni Ribisi, Cuba Gooding Jr, Oprah Winfrey, Common. And hello Tim Roth, fun to see you in an awesome role again. There is only good, great and amazing acting in this movie and I think that really helps out a lot.

The soundtrack to this movie is pretty great. The score was done by Jason Moran and it is pretty great, with all the right emotions and tension in place. And the licensed tracks used are perfectly placed as well and really helps sell teh time period. And ouf course I’m gonna talk about the original song “Glory” by Common and John Legend that was made for the movie… it’s pretty great. Perfect for the movie and overall really good music. Great job, guys!

This movie looks pretty fucking fantastic. The directing is really good and the cinematography is absolutely fantastic. The cinematography was done by Bradford Young who also did it for the movie “A Most Violent Year” which I kind of loved and reviewed a while back (Shameless plug). I feel like I need to disclaim something; if you can’t stand violence (a.k.a. if you’re a little squeamish) then this might not be the movie for you since it is at times really violent (But for a reason).

This movie has gotten some pretty great reception from critics and people alike. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 99% (100% if you go by “Top critics” only) positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 89/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,5/10. “Selma” also won an Oscar in the category of Best Original Song (Glory). And it was nominated for an additional Oscar in the category of Best Picture. 

“Selma” is a difficult movie to watch because of it’s often brutal scenes, but it is also a very emotional and well told movie with fantastic acting, great music, good directing and terrific cinematography. Time for my final score. I HAVE A DREAM… My final score for “Selma” is a 9,86/10 and definitely gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

Review of “Selma” is now completed.

… THAT ONE DAY THIS NATION WILL RISE UP…

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