Some of the most entertaining and unbelievable stories around are those that are true. When films take on these they can make for really great films if handled right with a good cast. The latest, Trumbo takes one such story and brings an amazing cast together including Bryan Cranston, Diane Lane, Helen Mirren, Alan Tudyk, Louis C.K., John Goodman, Stephen Root, and Elle Fanning, but does it bring this crazy story to life successfully or will it be a film not worth putting their name on?
Trumbo follows Dalton Trumbo, Hollywood’s top screenwriter in 1947 until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs, but used words and wit to win two Academy Awards and expose the absurdity and injustice under the blacklist, which entangled everyone from gossip columnist Hedda Hopper to John Wayne, Kirk Douglas and Otto Preminger. As interesting as this story is had it been handled the wrong way it could have ended up being really slow and boring, but thankfully that is far from the case. Filmmaker Jay Roach took the film in a more comedic direction without making it silly and losing the importance of what was happening at the time. It effectively brings this incredible story to life and most of that is thanks to leads Bryan Cranston who knocks it out of the park. He continues to bring amazing performances to his projects, but this might be his best to date. He is this movie and has a connection with every aspect of it from becoming the character to those around him making for a complete performance that most actors just don’t give that often. The rest of the cast all do a great job as well with the always great John Goodman stealing some of his scenes and comedian Louis C.K. stepping up his game and fitting in nicely.
With a story like this it requires iconic actors to be brought to life and while there are a couple of bumps with this when first introduced eventually you can allow yourself to be submerged into the story and believe you are seeing them on the screen again. The time period this all takes place obviously adds to the visual nature of the overall experience. They have captured this time in history and film perfectly making for a film that not only entertains, but tells a piece of Hollywood history that runs right alongside an important piece of history in our country. Whether you know about the story of Trumbo or not make sure you check out this film if for no other reason than that of Bryan Cranston’s performance alone.