By Debbie Elicksen.
How do you say no to God?
Spotlight (2015) is based on the true story of a Boston Globe investigative news team uncovering the answers to a scandal so big that it put the city’s identity at stake.
Directed by Tom McCarthy, the movie opens in a 1976 Boston police station, then fast forwards to the 2001 media room, where an investigative team of reporters are stationed. The team, named Spotlight, operates under the cloak of confidentiality when they work on their assignments for over a year. Their work defines what gumshoe reporting is all about.
The team is comprised of Editor at Large Walter ‘Robby’ Robinson (Michael Keaton), Reporter Mike Rezendes (Mark Ruffalo), Reporter Matt Carroll (Brian d’Arcy James), Reporter Sacha Pfeiffer (Rachel McAdams), Editor Martin Baron (Liev Schreiver), and Editor Ben Bradlee, Jr. (John Slattery).
The Boston Globe, not unlike any other media outlet during these times, is in the cusp of cost cuts when they are tasked to uncover the Catholic Church’s cover up of a massive child molestation scandal that is so widespread, the Diocese in Boston is just a small proportion.
The team learns that physical and spiritual abuse, confusing/emotional responses from victims resulting from papal abuse is a recognized psychic phenomenon. They uncover a pedophile ring that includes six percent of all priests, 87 local priests, and that the culture of abuse is systematic.
“If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to abuse one.”
While the strong story line itself is enough to hold your attention throughout the film, the acting is superb on all counts.
The movie won Academy Awards for Best Motion Picture and Best Writing, Original Screenplay. It was also nominated for four other Oscars. Four out of five stars.