Really Late Review – Hidden Figures

This is an experiment. It occurred to me that not everyone sees movies when they first come out. We sure don’t. Life is busy and there are other priorities. I used to try to see all of the nominees for Best Picture before the Academy Awards but there are simply too many other things to do. We don’t get a lot of screen time. 

This is where you come in. I’d like your involvement in this concept of mine: The Really Late Review.  I hope to publish one every Friday. If you’ve finally gotten around to seeing a movie, listening to a CD, watching a TV series, attending a live performance or reading a book, perhaps you’d care to review it here. It doesn’t need to be anything fancy. You don’t have to know the history of cinema or make references to tenth century literature. But you do need to be able to express yourself and explain why you did or didn’t like what you saw, heard or read. The aim is to remind each other about things we may have missed. 

There are a couple of ground rules:

  1. No profanity or major spoilers.
  2. You agree that I can publish your review here online, strictly for the fun of it. 
  3. I reserve the right to edit for clarity and grammar but I promise not to mess with the spirit of your work

Any length. Any topic. Anything you think might be of value to someone else.  Email:  I’ll go first.

Hidden Figures was shut out of the Oscars but should have won something. Anything! It works on so many levels. It’s the story of the little-known African-American women who developed the calculations for NASA’s entry into the space race in the 1960s. Not only is it based in fact, it’s a stark lesson in the tipping point of the civil rights movement. It only tipped because people pushed it and these women were three who pushed hard.

Taraji P. Henson is incredible as math genius Katherine Johnson. Octavia Spencer’s reserved performance as self-taught computer whiz Dorothy Vaughan offers a master class in under-acting. There’s quiet power in holding back. Janelle Monae has always been a passable musical performer in my books, but she kills it in her movie debut. Kevin Costner just gets better with age and The Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons plays an ultra-subdued 1960s version of Sheldon Cooper; not only brilliant and jealous of anyone else’s success but racist as well.  

For once, a movie lives up to the hype. It inspires without being cheesy and teaches without preaching. Well, there’s a little bit of preaching but it’s authentic to the story. After watching it On Demand, I woke up the next morning thinking about this film. Art at its best. 



3 thoughts on “Really Late Review – Hidden Figures”

  1. You forgot one rule. The misuse or abuse of the ‘ will not be tolerated and edited for correctness! But, then anyone who reads your posts over the years may already assume this to be the case.

  2. A truly excellent idea! More and more, we’re taking to binge watching shows that we missed (or ignored) years ago. We’re even to the point of avoiding current shows until there are enough to binge on. We’ve gotten to this point for several, related, reasons.

    1. As I get older (I say “I” to let Jan speak for herself), I can’t remember what happened in last week’s episode. Sometimes, I can’t remember that I’ve even WATCHED last week’s episode.
    2. Shows are preempted/moved/whatever so often that I can’t follow the storyline (see #1)
    3. The seasons are so short, often as few as 13 episodes, that there can be 3/4 of a year between episodes (again, see #1)

    I know we’ve aged out of the networks’ (see that apostrophe?) target demographic but, if they are wondering why viewership is declining, there just might be a clue in there somewhere.

    The joke here is that we may be able to downsize again. We’re living in a house with thousands of books and hundreds of movies. As we get older, we suspect that one of each might be sufficient ’cause we won’t remember having read/watched either one.

    1. Excellent points! I tease Derek – gently – that he can enjoy a rerun of anything because he doesn’t remember seeing it the first time! Also, trying to find where these shows originate is quite a challenge. Frankly, since we switched providers we sometimes find ourselves lost in a sea of channels. I hope you’ll send me a review of something for an upcoming edition of RLR. Awesome apostrophe. (I love your idea of one book and one movie! We can relate…)

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