​​THE WEBER MOVIE COUNTDOWN

THE WEBER MOVIE COUNTDOWN

THE GOAL FOR 2018: 200 MOVIES WATCHED BY MIDNIGHT NEW YEAR'S EVE!  (AFTER TOPPING OUT AT 194 in 2017)

CAN HE DO IT?

FREE STATE OF JONES (2016)










Free State of Jones is the true and little-known story of Newton Knight, a Confederate deserter (Matthew McConaughey) who ends up championing a movement of runaway slaves and other deserters into a force that successfully battle the perplexed Southern forces (those nasty Confederates steal food and resources from the local Mississipi farms) and actually takes over three counties at the end of the Civil War. This film is not without its flaws, and the opening battle scenes ar...e gruesome and uncomfortable to watch, establishing why Knight cannot stand what is happening. The performances are solid, especially McConaughey who is a fair, just and heroic man who just happened to be born in the wrong part of the country for such people. Also good are Gugu Mbatha-Raw as the slave he falls in love with and Keri Russell as the hardscrabble woman who is Knight's wife and bears his first child. This movie takes on far more than can fit in its almost two and a half hour running time, adding a parallel (and unnecessary) subplot set many, many years later about the trial of a descendant who married without revealing he had "Negro blood" in him, against the law in Mississippi at the time. The film loses some momentum when it cuts away, and gets a little too busy when it starts to deal with the KKK and other atrocities, losing its way a bit. The core story was enough Anyway, still worth seeing but ultra-serious - vastly different fare than the superhero epics and action comedies filling the cineplexes this time of year. #85 of 2016.

Should TLA see this? Unsure as almost no one drinks ANY coffee in this depressing decaffeinated era.