Film: Watchable Washington can’t save dull drama

Roman J Israel, Esq almost immediately shatters into a dozen confusing plotlines before a final collapse into unearned sentiment

4th February, 2018
7
Denzel Washington in Roman J Israel, Esq

Screenwriter Dan Gilroy’s directorial debut Nightcrawler was a dark satire on media sensationalism that gave Jake Gyllenhaal one of the best roles of his career, playing a socially maladjusted “citizen journalist” creeping around Los Angeles dispassionately videotaping car accidents and murder scenes for the nightly news. Gilroy’s follow-up Roman J Israel, Esq employs a similarly maladroit individual to tell a story of how the progressive ideals of the civil rights movement have been lost in...

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