May 6, 2012

Freedomland, 2006

Freedomland, 2006
Director: Joe Roth
Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, Julianne Moore, Edie Falco

Stage: Home TV selection, late Sunday night

Freedomland in short: When her son disappears and is believed to be dead, a single mother blames an African-American man from the projects for the kidnapping, creating a racial controversy. An African-American detective and a white missing child researcher team up to investigate the case, which they discover may be more complicated than they expected.

Preps: Well, I am not familiar with the piece, I doubt it came to our theatres, as I would have noticed. I am a fan of Jackson, therefore I need to at least check it out. And I see Julianne Moore is in this piece, two reasons then to do it.

Reality: One thing is certain. Great actors don't provide good movies by themselves. You cannot have a good piece without a good story (and a believable one), which is delivered in the most convenient and intriguing way. And a director to guide you through. Samuel L. Jackson and Julianne Moore can be the best actors in the world, but without a firm guidance and director, who knows what he's doing, nothing will happen for sure.

Now, to be more precise - the story about a young boy missing gets in my radar after a while, when I was on a good way to shut the movie down and watch something completely different. Now it gets interesting. What happened with the boy and why is the mother so high all the time? Julianne Moore can play in drama genre perfectly and fits to a crushed mother image like a glove. This piece may not be one of my favourite deliveries on the topic, however I sense some great cast from Moore here. Unfortunately, I cannot say anything similar with regards to L. Jackson. I am dissappointed in his low effort energy and low energy between the both main fish - Moore and Jackson don't interact as they should.

The setting, the storyflow, everything else from that point (when you realize what this is going to be about), is more or less like an episode of CSI, just without people with sprays and pins to collect the details. I embrace the approach, but the delivery should have been better. I am not surprised it never got to our theatres, because quite frankly I would be really pissed off to spend my money to watch this in theatres.

Lots of room for improvement. The lighting is weird, scenography also. Where is the music, what happened to the art director? The main thing why I didn't decide to go with 0 at my personal rating is Moore - she does the trauma act superbly. You can never know if she's high or drugged, or just devastated. Brilliant. On the other hand, at some point I decide I want to watch this until the end because it simply interests me what will happen and what is the reality behind her lies. It could have been pulled off better and more sophisticated. Well, every day is not Sunday, right? ;)

My personal rating: 5,0 (if you don't have other more intriguing options. Moore does have an interesting role and a good delivery).

Freedomland on IMDB

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