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Conviction

by

Jeff Nelson

For those of you who are looking for an involving drama, Conviction offers a true story that's executed well. Recommended.

Conviction
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Audiences worldwide have different opinions regarding films based on true stories. Some people enjoy them and feel that it relates more to the viewers. Others feel that it's uncreative to rip event for event from real life. However, I believe that it all depends on the execution of the film. There are some that claim to be true stories, but exaggerate quite a bit of the story to make it more 'interesting'. Conviction manages to remain feeling realistic and not as though Hollywood slaughtered the original events.

A working mother puts herself through law school in an attempt to represent her brother, who has been incorrectly convicted of murder and has been sentenced to life in prison. The story itself is rather phenomenal. It's quite inspiring to see the love between family in this film. The lead spends many years becoming a lawyer in order to prove her brother's innocence. The screenplay shows more than just the case. It shows how Betty Waters' life was torn apart from trying to save her brother. The major concept behind the film is the unbreakable bonds within family. The screenplay is well-written and luckily focuses on the story of Betty Anne Waters and less on trying to use too many Hollywood clichés.

It seems as though audiences weren't the only ones touched by the film. Some excellent actors read the script and saw its potential. Hilary Swank, Sam Rockwell, Minnie Driver, and Melissa Leo all star. It goes without saying that this cast is very capable of pulling off excellent performances. Hilary Swank is a superb actress in everything she has been in. Sam Rockwell is very convincing as the falsely accused brother of Swank. Both of these actors communicate excellently on screen and show a real natural connection. Minnie Driver has one of the smallest roles in the entire film. Nonetheless, this doesn't stop her from having an absolutely perfect performance.

As Betty Anne Waters continues to fight for her brother's freedom, she continues to go to varies locations in the small town. The tone of the film is very dark and gritty. There are some interesting shots shown throughout. One memorable one is when Betty is sitting outside and staring at the sunset and it shows her from a distance. It's a fantastic shot with a beautiful display.

When I was renting Conviction, I didn't think I'd enjoy it much. I couldn't have been more wrong. This film keeps its viewers heavily engaged from the moment that it starts up until the final credits. The true story is rather incredible and the movie represents the story well. The leading role and a few of the supporting roles are exceptional in every way. I'm actually surprised that critics didn't give more recognition to a few of these actors for their performances here. For those of you who are looking for an involving drama, Conviction offers a true story that's executed well. Recommended.

My Rating = Four Stars

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