MPAA Rating: R
Director: Pablo Larrain
Starring: Natalie Portman, Peter Sarsgaard, Greta Gerwig
Runtime: 1 hr 40 mins
What It Is: We follow First Lady of the United States Jacquelyn Kennedy (Portman) following the assassination of her husband and president John F. Kennedy in Dallas on November 22nd, 1963. Jackie speaks with a reporter (Billy Crudup) she believes she can trust, and perhaps control. We get insight on what happened that fateful day, as well as how it affected those close to her including her brother-in-law Robert F. Kennedy (Sarsgaard) among the many others.
What We Think: Sluggishly paced and essentially carried by Natalie Portman’s powerhouse performance. She is powerful and represents Jackie O wonderfully. Larrain needed to rein it in a little. His camera seems intrusive. We don’t feel nearly as fly on the wall as we should. We don’t disappear. That’s the big issue. I think it’s edited well and the music is alright. No one outside of Portman has a believable accent. That took me out of the film for a bit. This is by no means the best of the Oscar fodder but I certainly feel like Portman earned herself a nomination. She’s so darn good. Not as good as her Oscar-winning role in Black Swan but really a decent flick.
Our Grade: C+, See it if only for Natalie Portman’s gripping performance. If you’re one of the only people in the world who doesn’t know the story of JFK’s assassination what are you doing? Definitely, see the film, but heed what I said when I mean that it is sluggish. Too often the film’s narrative crawls to a lull. That just does not work sadly. Perhaps check out Larrain’s previous, and fantastic film No it is truly great. To close I’ll see that this is one of the last films I saw in 2016. There’s two more be on the lookout for our best of the year coming soon and definitely check out our Worst of 2016.