There are a couple “based on a true story” movies being released in December, three of which pique my interest, but two look like complete eye-rollers. There’s nothing worse than a flop that had the potential to be good, especially when it comes to historically-based films, and there are some major red flags here. I can’t wait to see if my predictions come true.
- Mary Queen of Scots, directed by Josie Rourke and staring Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie. A historic epic about the rivalry between Mary Stuart and Queen Elizabeth I sounds compelling if done right. I’m not familiar with Saoirse Ronan’s work, but Margot Robbie has been great in everything she’s done. I’ve already read a couple reviews that set off alarm bells. My fingers are crossed that the filmmakers didn’t try to shoehorn a modern social or political message into this.
- The Mule, directed by and staring Clint Eastwood. Based on the true story of 90-year-old drug mule Leo Sharp. Clint Eastwood usually hits it out of the park, but we’ll see if his age has finally caught up with him.
- Vice, directed by Adam McKay and staring Christian Bale, Amy Adams, and Sam Rockwell. This film purports to tell the story of how Dick Cheney became George W. Bush’s vice president. It shouldn’t be a surprise that Vice will portray Cheney, Bush, and company in an unflattering light, but the cast is filled with talent so maybe it’ll end up being a compelling political drama.
- On the Basis of Sex, directed by Daniel Stiepleman and staring Felicity Jones. The film follows a young Ruth Bader Ginsburg as she teams up with her husband to bring a discrimination case before the U.S. Court of Appeals. I don’t understand the celebrity worship surrounding Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and I couldn’t care less about this. Courtroom dramas are boring and the only people who will watch this film are female undergrads at Harvard.
- Welcome to Marwen, directed by Robert Zemeckis and staring Steve Carell, Diane Kruger, and Eiza González. This pretentious art film tells the story of Mark Hogancamp, a guy who worked through the trauma of an assault by replicating a WW2 Belgian village in miniature in his backyard. The special effects are cool, but this obvious Oscar bait looks like it belongs on the Hallmark Channel. I think I’ll pass.