Just Mercy

Just Mercy ★★★½

Destin Daniel Cretton has so much empathy as a filmmaker, and it's disappointing that he hasn't found a way to do more with his camera. With Short Term 12, while the direction was far from the most memorable aspect, there was a sense of immediacy to it that he hasn't been able to capture in any of his work since. Just Mercy is a high-stakes narrative, rich with human drama and larger political frustrations, and yet it is so completely predictable from beat to beat. Much of this is because of the script, of course, but my point is that Cretton uses his scripts as far more than just the blueprint they should be -- the direction adds nothing. A montage of gray-to-beige colored images of actors who deserve something brighter. It was still an emotional and involving viewing experience, but it could have been so much deeper.

Very happy that SAG acknowledged Jamie Foxx's work in this, despite the lack of hype the overall film has been getting. Him and Rob Morgan are heartbreaking in this.

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