I can’t think of many prominent nationally-recognized people or places or events that haven’t had a major motion picture either directly or indirectly made about it/them. So there are folks in Hollywood who go through thousands and thousands of scripts each year to try to uncover a story line worth making a film about…something new/novel. How the heck somebody uncovered the story “Marshall” is based on is really impressive.
Marshall no doubt made his name known nationally arguing successfully before the US Supreme Court to get public school segregation ruled unconstitutional in the historic Brown v. Board of Education case. Subsequently he became the first African American named to the Supreme Court.
The film takes us back to Marshall’s early legal days as the lead attorney for the NAACP traveling the country providing legal representation to African Americans unjustly arrested and accused primarily due to race. His role is acted fantastically by Chadwick Boseman
This charismatic and very astute lawyer, travels to very elite and white Greenwich, CT to represent a black chauffeur accused of rape by his extremely rich socialite employer (Kate Hudson).
Marshall, denied a temporary license to practice law in CT (the judge is played magnificently by James Cromwell) joins up with a local Jewish attorney (becomes important in the film) who has never practiced criminal law (played fabulously by Josh Gad). This most incongruous pairing find a common ground, a common enemy and become a very effective legal team.
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I’m going to leave it at that. This is a very fine film and a not surprising look at race and the law in the elite east in 1941. Side note, if you are a fan of the exquisite TV series “This Is Us”, you are going to like the acting by Sterling K. Brown (the adult Randall in the show).
Definitely one of the better movies of the year.