Morally ambiguous situations are something that most people try to avoid. There can be blurred lines between which decision is the most ethical. People who are good and bad are displayed as sharp contrasts in many films. Bad people do horrible things with self-serving motives, while the good people try to do generous acts that help others. This is not very reflective of the real world. The world is not white and black. Everyone has their own separate troubles and life experiences that lead them down different paths. The film “Widows” dabbles heavily in themes of morality, making the audience question the implications of each character in the film.
The movie centers around Veronica, a woman who just lost her husband, Harry, after he died during a heist. During that heist, Harry and his associates had stolen two million dollars from Jamal Manning. Jamal was probably the worst person to steal money from, as he is both a crime boss and a politician running for office. Since Henry is dead, Jamal threatens Veronica to give him the two million dollars. There is never an exact threat, but there are heavy implications that Veronica will be killed if she doesn’t conform. Veronica now has to perform a planned robbery in her husband’s notebook with the widows of the other deceased heist members. She soon finds out that the robbery is against Jamal’s competitor, Jack Mulligan. The film does have a very convoluted plot, with many different plot lines involving the separate widows and the different political campaigns. The film seamlessly weaves the different plots into each other so that by the end of the film there are no loose threads.
Without many jokes, the film strives confidently on the skills of the actors involved in order to pull off a compelling drama piece. Many familiar faces such as Viola Davis, Liam Neeson and Daniel Kaluuya all star in the film. They all do a great job with the script at hand. Not one actor was miscast. Kaluuya especially played his role perfectly. He played the violent brother of Jamal, killing multiple people throughout the movie. Kaluuya is threatening in presence and presentation. He doesn’t need threatening lines of dialogue to get across that he is the boss, his performance sells that he is one.
There is a twist that happens semi-late into the film. This felt like the only weak part of the story, because it didn’t seem to add to the movie as a whole. Without the subplot, the movie would have operated the same as if it would without it. Despite the singular flaw, “Widows” is an impeccably made movie with great pacing, characters and dialogue that is well grounded into the reality ridden streets of Chicago.
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