Doubt Movie Reviews
User reviews on Doubt
I knew nothing about the stage version when I went to see this movie. I expected the typical boring drama where the actors are more interested in displaying their skills than in actually entertaining the audience, but I was pleasantly surprised. The movie is gripping and suspenseful in a cerebral way. There have been many raves about the performances in this movie, and rightly so, but I want to put in a good word for Amy Adams. Her portrayal of a sweet nun provides a nice balance to the darker elements in this movie and should not go unnoticed. I also feared that this movie would degenerate into a church bashing fest, but that's not the case. Instead, the church is depicted as being made up of people who are trying to do the right thing, but who bring their own strengths and faults to the table. I also expected some queasy, uncomfortable moments when the issue of the priest's possible transgressions were addressed in the film. There was no need to be concerned about that; it's handled well. All in all, I recommend this film.
If you've seen the previews you'll get a glimpse of how bleak looking and simple this story is. However, it's worth seeing for two reasons 1) the one on one confrontation between Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman in Sister Beauvier's office (these two are simply two of the best in the business) and 2) the scene with Viola Davis which could garner her an Oscar. Both very very powerful!
I saw the stage play with Cherry Jones and it had a bit more ambiguity, or you could say, more doubt was left in the audience\'s mind regarding the events and issues raised in this beautifully written play. I didn\'t expect that I would want more clarity because the questions left in your mind are so compelling and worth arguing about. Despite my skepticism moving it to the Hollywood screen, the movie holds forth with all those great questions, and has obviously great performances. The part that Meryl has, it seems to me, has been made a stronger character. But Streep\'s depiction of Sister Aloysius Beauvier\'s with her iron will, fortitude and resilience is made into a fascinating study by, let\'s face it, one of the greatest actresses you can see on screen - especially when her heart and soul are in it. And Shanley, the playwright and screenwriter and director, wisely adjusts to that shift from what Cherry Jones did on Broadway. It is smartly directed, and visually engaging, not a shooting of the stage play. See it now, because you\'ll see it eventually, no one can actually avoid it forever. So do yourself a favor and get with the conversation by seeing this entertaining, discussable, handsome movie on the BIG screen....
John Patrick Shanley's "Doubt" exists mostly to provide the scenery that Meryl Streep needs to sustain herself. She certainly tears off and chews up a lot of it in this drama about a nun accussing a priest of being too chummy with one of his students. As the priest, Philip Seymour Hoffman does his share of grandstanding. Actually, the best performance comes from Viola Davis as the mother of the boy at the center of the controversy.
Doubt is the kind of film one expects to see around Oscar timeâ€”big-name actors in very serious dramas. With its history as a play and its plot about a priest and a nun squaring off over accusations of child abuse, it almost seems to be trying too hard to be â€œimportant.â€ But give it time, and Doubt will make you a believer.
Itâ€™s the actors who make this an incredible filmâ€”Meryl Streep as Sister Beauvier and Philip Seymour Hoffman as Father Flynn in particular. Beauvier launches a campaign against Flynn over the alleged abuse, and he fights back. In no other film this year will you get to see two great actors go at it like this. The whole filmâ€”dialogue-heavy, of courseâ€”is like a dance between them.
There have been some great female performances this year, but Streep has got to be a lock for a Best Actress nomination, if not the award.