Saturday, 20 June 2009

Review: Doubt

I just last night watched the movie, Doubt. It was excellent.

I'm surprised it didn't win any Oscars. In my opinion Meryl Streep did a whole lot more with this role (and it was far meatier) than Kate Winslet's character in The Reader, who spent most of her time stripping and rolling about in bed. Of course, I'm not that interested in seeing Meryl Streep strip and role about in bed, so I'm very glad that in this role she played a nun who kept her clothes tightly on.

Phillip Seymour Hoffman was excellent as Father Flynn, but I can't compare him to Sean Penn who won the Oscar that year as I haven't seen Milk, and the supporting cast was great too.

For those who haven't seen Doubt, this is a movie which leaves you to think for yourself, which is rare in movies these days. It isn't about flashy effects either, but I remained engrossed the whole movie. It's about the goings on in a Catholic Church where a strict old-timer nun comes into conflict with a more liberal priest (Father Flynn), whom she suspects of misconduct, and the sweet and younger nun (Sister James) who is at her beck and call. Doesn't sound like a lot but it's absolutely mesmerising.

A lot of bloggers have asked what is the moral of this story, and some have talked about how it may be about how things can happen when you act and you are not certain, you have doubts. On the other hand, it also can make you think about what might happen if you were uncertain, and if you didn't act, but waited until you had that certainty before acting. Would you never act and what would the consequences be?

In the end it does show the consequences of 'certainty' or moral superiority and the importance of doubt, but should we not act simply because we have doubts?

I really thought this was one of the best-acted movies I've seen in a long time, and had a powerful theme to it.

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