The Butler Review

2 Sep

It was a movie weekend here.  There were just so many that I wanted to see out right now and I only made a small dent.  So today I went to see The Butler.

Lee Daniels' The Butler (2013) Poster

It was fantastic.  The acting was amazing and the story was so compelling.  This movie is both a family and a civil rights movie at it’s core.  We witness history through the eyes of a White House Butler.  It would have been so amazing to see history happen and policy shaped before your eyes.  But not be allowed to interject or tell anyone.  HA!  So not the job for me, I find it nearly impossible to keep my opinion to myself.  Just watching what the family and friends of the main character Cecil Gaines (played amazingly well by Forest Whitaker) was difficult to comprehend.  I just have such a difficult time imagining a life like the one they endured.  It does make me thankful for the life that I was born into.  I mean, I have it had it easy and I always have.  I’m sure that I take it for granted more often than not.

The other awesome acting job in this movie came from Oprah!  She played the wife of Cecil Gaines.  The chain smoking alcoholic wife of Cecil Gaines to boot.  And she did not phone it in, I was very impressed.  She played a loving wife and mother and an angry wife and mother equally well.

Watching the evolution of the relationship between Cecil and his oldest son was also difficult.  His son played a man fighting for civil rights.  He picked different routes than his father approved of and that caused a long separation.  However, the two were finally able to come together, finally seeing the perspective of the other.  This is easier said than done, they were both so sure of the “rightness” of their position.  And in a way, they were both right, they just needed to find the middle.

Overall, I would highly recommend seeing this movie.  Go out and see it now.  It’s part history lesson, a part that is usually overlooked or brushed over in school.  It’s an important part of our history as Americans and one that a lot of people would like to not discuss, but we can and should learn from our past.

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