Welcome to The Best Movies I’ve Never Seen! This is the part of the blog where I work my way through 100 films I’ve never seen that are generally considered to be great. You’re invited to watch along with me if you can find a copy or find it streaming. So grab some popcorn and let’s get started!
Directed by Tom McCarthy
Quick synopsis… A team of reporters and editors at the Boston Globe relentlessly investigate a shocking child molestation cover-up by the Catholic Church.
- Over the years, I have grown more and more fond of true crime.
- Doesn’t matter if it’s a dramatized movie that takes a few creative liberties or if it’s a straight-up documentary series.
- The subject matter of this film is pretty friggin’ effed up.
- But that’s what happens when your film is tackling a massive cover-up involving so many multiple child molestation cases.
- In the Catholic Church, no less.
- The opening scene begins in a Boston police station in 1976.
- A priest has been arrested, accused of molesting a little boy.
- The priest is being held while a bishop speaks with the child’s mother.
- An assistant district attorney comes in and reminds the police at the front desk to keep all of this quiet.
- Soon after, the bishop leaves with the accused priest, walking out as a free man.
- They climb into a black sedan as if the mafia just stepped in to clear up a little legal misunderstanding.
- Then we jump ahead to 2001 at The Boston Globe.
- Marty Baron (Liev Schreiber), the new managing editor, meets with Robby (Michael Keaton), editor of the Globe‘s “Spotlight” investigative team.
- When Marty reads about an attorney who has accused the Archbishop of Boston of having full knowledge of Father Geoghan’s (same priest as 1976) involvement in the sexual abuse of children throughout the past three decades, he wants the “Spotlight” team to investigate.
- Eventually, the team uncovers the fact that the accusations of sexual abuse go far beyond just Father Geoghan, but also involve a number of other priests in Massachusetts.
- Unfortunately, timing forces the team to temporarily shift focus when the World Trade Center is attacked on 9/11.
- Eventually, the team publishes early on in 2002, exposing that Cardinal Bernard Law had full knowledge of every accusation against each priest under him in the church hierarchy.
- The Globe also published a phone number for abuse victims to contact, which led to the Spotlight team getting overwhelmed by all the calls they received of victims coming forward.
- Most shocking (or maybe sickening is the better word) was the list revealing locations where this abuse scandal has been covered up… not just in the U.S. but around the world.
- Having now seen Spotlight, it currently ranks at 119 out of 2,248 movies on my personal Flickchart list.
The details of this movie/investigation are painful to watch/hear about. But this is an excellent movie in my opinion, as you can see from where I’m ranking it after watching. Excellent, but difficult subject matter to watch. Might just make the list of movies I really like that I’ll never see again. Have you seen Spotlight? And if so, what did you think about it? Let me know down in the comments! If you haven’t seen the movie, it can currently be found streaming on Netflix. Then come back next week as I enter the 80s (on the list, not the decade) with Hotel Rwanda.