Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Weekend Watch: ‘The Forgiven’ is Timeless and ‘Wrinkle in Time’ Has All the Bells and Whistles

Forest Whitaker as Archbishop Desmond Tutu in ‘The Forgiven.’

*Always timely are films that keep the conversation going about racism that many still will not admit it exists. Worse still, some think discrimination is justified.

In “The Forgiven,” Forest Whitaker stars as the renowned Archbishop Desmond Tutu, chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), which sought to investigate the brutal politically inspired abuses committed during the apartheid years. The film is loosely based on true events, and a play by Michael Ashton called “The Archbishop and the Antichrist.”

Eric Bana is the no-holds-barred “anti-Christ” Piet Blomfeld, a white separatist with a history of apartheid-era violence doing major time in maximum security Pollsmoor Prison. In an attempt to avail himself to the TRC, Blomfeld writes a letter to Tutu. Inside the prison walls, Tutu is drawn into a dangerous, life-changing battle with the cunning criminal Blomfeld who is seeking clemency.

Although heart wrenching, especially when experiencing the pain of Mrs. Morobe (Thandi Makhubele), the violence is definitely a detractor. Morobe is a mother who pleads with Tutu to uncover the circumstance surrounding the unlikely murder of her teenage daughter.

Directed by Roland Joffé, the film also stars Nandiphile Mbushu, Jeff Gum, and Morne Visser.

A Wrinkle in Time

The long awaited “Wrinkle in Time” has all the bells and whistles, self-awareness emphasis, bullying messages, family cohesiveness and hope. And it is always commendable to have onscreen black family members who are brilliant—the mother is a physicist and the children are exceptional.

Wiz kid Meg (Storm Reid) in ‘A Wrinkle in Time.”

With all of this, however, I still walked away feeling an emptiness and no emotional involvement. Senses somewhat dulled by the extensive blazing and intense CGI would’ve best been served by substantial content.

After the disappearance of her scientist father (Christ Pine), three peculiar being, Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) and Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling) send Meg (Storm Reid), her brother Charles (Deric McCabe), and her friend Calvin (Levi Miller) into space to find him.

Directed by Ava DuVernay, the film also stars Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Zach Galifianakis, David Oyelowo, Michael Peña, and Andre Holland.       Twitter: @thefilmstrip

Marie Moore
Veteran syndicated journalist who covers film and television.



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