Starring: David Oyelowo, Tom Wilkinson, Carmen Ejogo, Tim Roth, Oprah Winfrey, Carmen Ejogo, Giovanni Ribisi, Common, Andre Holland
Written By: Paul Webb
Directed By: Ava DuVernay
Studio: Paramount Pictures
Buy On Amazon.com
Selma is a movie that probably should have gotten more nominations for the Academy Awards but it only got 2. It’s a good film filled with intense drama, based on real events with terrific acting by David Oyelowo.
Events kick off the movie when Annie Lee Cooper (Oprah) tries to register to vote in Selma, Alabama but is prevented from doing so. MLK (David Oyelowo) meets with President Lyndon B. Johnson (Tom Wilkinson) to ask for federal legislation but the President has other things to worry about. Protests and demonstrations begin to happen down in Alabama, but people begin getting hurt and even killed. A huge march from Selma to Montgomery paves the way for the President to finally take action and have a bill that eliminates restrictions on voting.
There’s so much history when it comes to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr that there could be several movies about him. If they star David Oyelowo, I’d love to watch all of them. Selma is mainly focused on the events around Selma and getting that important Voting Rights bill passed that changed history. For the most part, Oyelowo captures Dr King really well. I think he was missing some of that gravitas that King had though. He doesn’t do any of those famous speeches in the movie, maybe because they didn’t get the rights to them? You need rights to retell history? Besides Oyelowo, some of the other acting was good. Although, it was a bit distraction that Tom Wilkinson and Tim Roth were the president and Governor Wallace. They were good but kind of wish we got more of an unknown to play those parts.
I thought the movie was shot really well. Other might not agree but I liked it. The look of the film felt like some kind of faded, Instagram filter for some of the shots. I probably could have done without the notes that popped on the screen though. They were kind of annoying and distracting at times. I can’t really tell you or not if this movie is historically accurate or not, but judging by most movies that happened in real life, I’m sure there were some things changed. I guess some people had complaints with the way the President was portrayed. I really have no opinion on it since I don’t know about it to comment.
There’s a bunch of featurettes to watch after the movie if that’s your thing. I enjoyed the featurettes “The Road to Selma” and “Recreating Selma” for the most part. There’s the “Glory” music video, the song from John Legend and Common that won an Oscar plus there’s a few commentary tracks on here. Overall, good enough extras but nothing too in-depth.
Selma may not please everybody but I liked what I saw. Great acting, interesting direction and a powerful, important story.
The Road to “Selma”
Deleted and Extended Scenes
“Glory” Music Video
Commentary by Director Ava DuVernay & David Oyelowo
“Selma” Student Tickets: Donor Appreciation
National Voting Rights Museum and Institute
Widescreen 2.35:1 Color
French Dolby Digital 5.1
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
Bottom Line: The main reason to watch this is mainly for David Oyelowo
Running Time: 128 mins