Slack Screening: SPOTLIGHT

It’s rare that a film will stick with you once you’ve left the theater. You might talk about funny bits, or remember a particularly stunning moment, but often a movie fades the further you walk away from the cinema.

A couple of weeks ago I saw SPOTLIGHT which I have not been able to stop thinking about. And the thing is it’s not a flashy movie. There are no dramatic chases or explosions. There are no kisses with music swelling in the background. Instead, it follows a group of investigative journalists at the Boston Globe looking to uncover a covered truth. And the truth is, it’s stunning.

The story they’re pursuing is the cover up by the Catholic Church of sexual abuse of children by their priests. Truly disturbing stuff. Performances across the board are understated, moving and exceptional. These big name actors (Michael Keaton, Liev Schreiber, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams) disappear into their roles, and do compelling work. The script is good. It delivers both gripping prose as well as captures the authentic simplicity of a “slice-of-life” documentary. The film looks great, and creates a world in which I found myself completely lost.

I walked out of the theater after the movie feeling sick, angry and saddened by what I had seen. I felt so much – and was reminded of the power of film. And not that all movies have to be profound or life-changing, but sometimes they can be. And for me, SPOTLIGHT was powerful, moving, and deeply emotional.

Final thoughts: SPOTLIGHT is well worth seeing, and it is a story that should be told. Go and check it out. Also, it will definitely be a contender come awards season if you’re into that sort of thing. Click HERE to read the original story published in the Boston Globe. 

photo credit:


  1. I probably need to see this, but it’s hard for me to watch stories about abuse. Granted, it’s probably hard for everyone to watch stories about abuse. You may have sold me on the movie, though. Perhaps I shall rally!


  2. "And not that all movies have to be profound or life-changing, but sometimes they can be." I love that. Your review was a brilliant read and I’m eager to see the film. I have a feeling I’ll experience the same emotional heart tugging as well as be appreciative of such powerhouse acting.


  3. Great review Beth. And thanks for attaching the original story. We saw it today. An incredible conspiracy of silence that has caused lasting harm.


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