Review: Spotlight

By: John Van Dam

Buckle up for a roller coaster of investigative journalism in this true story of persistence, triumph and tribulation. Spotlight, with an all-star cast featuring Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, and Liev Schreiber, takes us back to the late 90’s and early 2000’s, when the Boston Globe began investigative reporting of sexual child abuse in the catholic church. With almost all of Boston being or identifying with the catholic faith, Walter Robinson (Michael Keaton) knew that reporting on this would be completely frowned upon. The movie actually got its title from the investigative reporters department name, the “spotlight” team. This suspense/thriller will literally keep you on the edge of your seat for the entire two hours and seven minutes of film. Mark Ruffalo portrays the giddy and fidgety reporter, Michael Rezendes, who will stop at nothing to help get this story published. There’s even a scene where he argues with Keaton about when a good time to publish the story would be. The duo ululate opinions back and forth making you feel like you’re right in the newsroom with the team and you have to pick a side with positives and negatives on both. The movie focuses more on the reporting side than the disgusting and unfortunate acts that were happening in the catholic church for years, so you as a viewer are aware, but not uncomfortable.

With outstanding performances from all actors and actresses, the incredibly true storyline, and a perfectly hanging resolution, the credits roll leaving you beyond satisfied but with a craving for more. There is no doubt in my mind that Spotlight will win the Oscar for best picture and there is a great chance that Keaton and/or Ruffalo will win an acting award; whether it be best or supporting actor, either will suffice. I urge you to go see this movie before it leaves theaters because it is hands down my favorite movie I have seen this year. Just get ready for twists, turns, and the chilling realization that this actually happened less than 15 years ago.

Rating: 5/5