Richard Jewell. Paragraph Review

I found the previous two Clint Eastwood films a little bit hard to stomach. 15:17 to Paris is one of the most awkward and misjudged films I have ever had the displeasure of seeing (especially given that I saw it in cinemas.) The Mule was much better and Eastwood is always very watchable when acting but I got the sense that he was using the character he was playing as a mouthpiece for his own views in a way that sat very awkwardly in 2019. Despite the fact that Richard Jewell (a dramatisation of how the media treated the man falsely accused of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics bombing) has also caused controversy it is a mild return to form. It’s not great by by any means but it features two very strong central performances from Paul Weller Hauser and Sam Rockwell and is solidly engrossing from start to finish. This is even taking into account Eastwoods typical no-frills direction that makes the whole thing look like an HBO TV movie. The controversy has merit with Olivia Wilde portrayal of reporter Kathy Scruggs as a one-dimensional airhead willing to ask for sexual favours in return for a lead on a story (although the sex she has with a character played by Jon Hamm is implied rather than shown) it didn’t tank my enjoyment of the film. If you’re looking for a solidly engrossing drama and have seen all the major awards contenders you could do a lot worse then check this film out.

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