Richard Jewell (2019)

Paul Walter Hauser got known for playing Shawn Eckhardt in I, Tanya. Here, he’s playing another real life media story, the character this movie is named for, Richard Jewell.

This is directed by Clint Eastwood, who does one take for every scene and people love him for it. Yes, the same reason these same people made fun of Ed Wood.

As much as this movie presents the media killing the life of Jewell, it does the very same thing to reporter Kathy Scruggs, who died of a prescription drug overdose in 2001.

There’s a scene where she offers sex to Jon Hamm’s FBI agent in exchange for information, a moment that the editor-in-chief of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution stated was “entirely false and malicious.” Employees of the newspaper went even further, claiming that the movie should have a disclaimer that “some events were imagined for dramatic purposes and artistic license.”

Olivia Wilde defended the film and wondered why no one held Hamm’s character to the same standard. That’s probably because his character, Tom Shaw, is a composite based on many people and not an actual person who lived and breathed and left behind people that cared for her.

That makes it hard to believe in this film’s defense of Jewell when it commits the very same attacks on Scruggs. That said, Hauser is good and I always enjoy seeing Sam Rockwell show up.

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