MMT Quick Reviews for THE 33 and SPOTLIGHT

Happy Veterans Day MMT Family! I had the pleasure of early screening both THE 33 and SPOTLIGHT movies at the 24th annual Philadelphia Film Festival a couple of weeks ago, and both are extraordinary. Each film is based on a true story that highlights remarkable feats among tragic circumstances, and attests to the powers of determination and team work.

“The 33” tells the story of the Chilean miners who were trapped for 69 days underground, their families’ determination to have them rescued, and the herculean efforts put forward by an international team to do so. Considering that this is a recently occurring incident, 2010, many of us clearly remember hearing about it on the news – and watching the amazing rescues that were televised all over the world. But that takes nothing away from this movie, and I dare say you will be equally invested in it despite knowing the outcome. The acting was authentic – which makes sense since they filmed it on location in an actual mine, with the actors not having access to the normal luxuries of a Hollywood set.

Antonio Banderas gives a powerful performance as the group’s elected leader Mario Sepulveda, and it was very nice to see Lou Diamond Phillips – who’s been a fave of mine since La Bamba (I know I’m telling my age) – as shift supervisor Don Lucho.

What I most appreciated about this movie is how the theme of faith resonated throughout it – demonstrated beautifully by the inscription the miners left on one of the mine walls, and I won’t spoil what it says but look out for it!

You can find additional information about THE 33 by visiting the official website here, but I highly recommend you going out to see this one in theaters when it opens this Friday, November 13.

Now you should expect a few award contenders from this next movie, because SPOTLIGHT certainly is storytelling at its finest.  It tells the story of the Pulitzer prize-winning Boston Globe “spotlight” news team, whose investigation of a sex abuse scandal in the Massachusetts Catholic church unearthed a cover-up of abuse throughout the Roman Catholic church.

I will warn you MMT fam that if you are the type of moviegoer that needs immediate gratification or constant stimulation, “Spotlight” may not be your cup of tea. But for those who love watching a great story unfold, this one is the truth – no pun intended – and with many reviewers making comparisons to the news film classic “All The Presidents Men” it’s sure to be in many conversations come awards season. While viewing, I was making comparison to the critically acclaimed film “Doubt,” as they both do a great job highlighting a taboo topic with superb screenplays.

I will also give a trigger warning to anyone who has experienced sexual trauma – though there are no sex scenes displayed, there are moments where activity is described by fictional victims.

The movie boasts an all-star cast, including Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery and Brian D’arcy James. And, if I was a betting woman, I’d bet Ruffalo will see nominations for his amazing turn as Mike Rezendes in this one.

What I appreciated about this movie was the amount of effort and sacrifice by the news team that was highlighted. I’m certain it didn’t even come close to focusing on what each of those spotlight team members went through, but it gives some insight into what the cost may have been for each.

“Spotlight” also opens this Friday in theaters nationwide (opened last week in limited theaters). You can watch the trailer below, and get additional information about the film at the official website here.

Stop back and leave a comment or two when you see these films family!

Until next thought, Thomasena













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