Over the weekend, my wife and I discovered one of the best movies I’ve ever seen: Doubt.
Set in 1964 in the Bronx, Doubt is the story of an aging Catholic nun, the principal of the tiny grade school attached to a small parish. The priest, Father Flynn, appears to be injecting himself into an inappropriate relationship with a young African-American boy. A young and naive teacher at the school, also a nun, sees something suspicious and brings it to the attention of the principal, inciting a series of events which cast doubt on both Father Flynn’s integrity and the unfailing conviction of the school’s principal. In the midst of the power struggle, many secrets are revealed and the loyalties of the young nun are strained.
Doubt was nominated for five academy awards, and it’s obvious why the industry recognized it as among the finest released in 2008. It’s amazing in its power, its delivery and story, the dialog is taut and tense. The acting is incredible, the story gripping, and in the end, the climax is satisfying.
I’ve been hoping for a movie I’d like as well as The Good Shepherd for a long time now, and without hesitation I can say Doubt moves into one of the top slots for movies in my estimation. I would not exaggerate by saying it’s one of the best movies I’ve ever seen. Ever.
I’m not easily impressed with films, and my tastes tend to run a little off-center from most everyone else’s I know. But I was completely engrossed in this film from the beginning, and enjoyed every moment until the credits rolled. It was truly amazing. The truth, in the end and throughout the course of the film, is never displayed. We have only the word of the priest on one side and the conviction of the nun on the other. And the audience can decide for themselves; at least, that’s how I felt. There were events which could be interpreted in a couple of ways, and the final confrontation can be seen from both sides, I suppose. But it was nothing short of brilliant in its display of a power struggle against a backdrop of the better good.
I know most of you have seen this one by now, so all this secrecy is moot. But if you haven’t, I can’t recommend it highly enough.
As an aside, I applied the basic 3-act/4-part story structure overview to the film, looking for all the major points I’ve been learning about and practicing and applying to my own writing. And I found this fell perfectly into the structure, right down the time frames for each of the major points. (I found out this was based on a play, which explains everything, after seeing the movie.) It’s been a lot of fun to learn this method and apply it to stories and movies, and I think I’m really getting the hang o fit now. So, al I have to do is write I guess.
How as your weekend?
All original content copyright Darcknyt, 2009
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Related articles by Zemanta
- ‘Doubt’ DVD review (telegraph.co.uk)