Run time: 128mins
Director: Ava DuVernay
Cast: David Oyelowo, Carmen Ejogo, Tim Roth, Tom Wilkinson, Cuba Gooding Jr, Stan Houston, Oprah Winfrey, Giovanni Ribisi
Synopsis: The story of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s historic struggle to secure voting rights for all people – a dangerous and terrifying campaign that culminated with the epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, and led to President Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
This is new modern masterpiece, and although it largely missed out in this year’s Academy Awards (only best original sing, ‘Gloria’), Selma is the deserved breakthrough hit from multi-talented director Ava DuVernay and a film everyone should see.
Rising star David Oyelowo (Spooks; Interstellar, A Most Violent Year) brings Martin Luther King to the screen, embodying the vitality and spirit of the famed freedom fighter whilst never resorting to impersonation. Set during his dealings with President Johnson (another faultless performance from Tom Wilkinson) in the mid-1960s, this film is enriched with an extraordinary supporting cast that shed light on King’s friends, inner circle and the US administration. A challenging, tender and utterly captivating piece of cinema
All the more urgent, in view of contemporary US events like those in Ferguson, Missouri and Cleveden, Ohio, to remember the tumultuous three months in 1965 when Dr Martin Luther King led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition.
The large and impressive supporting cast includes a stomach churning turn from Tim Roth as the ruthless and racist Governor George Wallace and a performance of great honesty from Carmen Ejogo as Coretta Scott King.
This is a deeply moving record of people who risked their lives for equal franchise which is still highly relevant today.
Images courtesy of Pathe