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Kirk Honeycutt of The Hollywood Reporter on Amazing Grace:

The dullness of virtue infuses this historical story of the British MP who spent his life fighting the appalling institution of slavery in the British Empire. This is about as safe a historical/political topic as a filmmaker can tackle, where right and wrong are as clear as day. The only cause for wonder for a modern-day viewer is the speciousness and cynicism of the arguments made in favor of the institution in those days.

One does enjoy watching British actors waltz gracefully through such period pieces. So many previous stage and screen roles have prepared them for such projects that wigs, costumes and attitudes fit like well-worn gloves. So such veterans as Albert Finney, Michael Gambon and Ciaran Hinds can be wonderfully hammy yet still not overshadow young actors in the duller, more earnest roles, such as Welshman Ioan Gruffudd as the hero, William Wilberforce and Benedict Cumberbatch as William Pitt, the youngest British prime minister ever. [READ FULL REVIEW]

Reuters is syndicating the review with the headline “Slave drama “Amazing Grace” honorable, but dull”. The critic is predicting that this film will do better on cable and DVD. Read the full review of the movie here.

Anyone out there who’s had a chance to see the movie care to share their thoughts on the film? It’s screening later this week at the 31st Toronto International Film Festival, and has already screened earlier this month at the Politics and Spirituality: Outer Witness, Inner Faith conference in Pasadena.

4 Responses to “The Hollywood Reporter’s take on Amazing Grace”

  1. on 25 Feb 2007 at 8:27 pm Cathy Driscoll

    Disregard the Hollywood Reporter’s disparaging summation of this film. It is indeed honorable, but not dull. If you are only entertained by explosions, or graphic sex and violence, then find another movie. But if you are interested in a thoughtful, well-acted and superbly directed film, which never insults your intelligence, then consider taking your family to see Amazing Grace.

  2. on 27 Feb 2007 at 12:54 pm Georgia

    I don’t go to movies at all but
    I certaily hope to see this one!
    This song called “Amazing Grace”
    has changed lives for the better.
    The abolition of slavery for the
    precious Black people and for
    all sinners alike is a
    wonderful topic for a movie in these
    God-forsaken modern times and
    I only wish there were more made
    that emphasize Truth and justice
    for all.
    God surely inspired the writer of
    this song: ” Amazing Grace”
    I’m so glad someone took the time to
    promote its story.
    God bless his efforts!

  3. on 03 Mar 2007 at 7:11 am Betty Mehan Calter

    Hi to All:

    Saw Amazing Grace yesterday (Fri. 3/2/07) and loved the movie and its message.

    Seeing that people of color (peachy cream) have truly cared about other people of color (black and brown)touched my heart and gave me hope for all people of all colors.

    Now I’d like to see something similar in regard to the United State’s Abolition Movement. If there is one already, let me know what and where it is and I’ll track it down.

    The movie Amazing Grace deserves getting the best picture nomination as well as best actor, supporting actor and maybe best supporting actress.


    Betty Mehan Calter
    A person of color

  4. on 05 Mar 2007 at 11:47 am Michael Ball

    This is by far the best movie we have seen for years. It has a great story, excellent political overtones and wonderful acting. We (3 people) all agree. I had to write a paper many, many years ago in my history class about William Wilberforce but this put everything in perspective.

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