Just Mercy (2019) Poster

(2019)

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9/10
Great movie wonderful story!!
MR_Heraclius18 March 2020
Was so hard to watch the police chief and the DA assume that just because you r black u r guilty. Was so impressed by the young black attorney--his drive even though he was subjected to brutality himself. Makes u look at death row in a very different light to be sure that those whom r there r truly guilty. Highly recommend this movie.
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10/10
Take some of the very negative scores with a grain of salt....the film is amazing.
MartinHafer22 October 2019
I saw "Just Mercy" a few days ago at the Philadelphia Film Festival and was blown away by the film....and I consider it to be one of the best movies I've seen in recent years. I could easily see the picture receiving several Oscar nominations---especially for acting. Imagine my suprise when I looked on IMDB and saw a score of 5.6 and some negative reviews! I am not exactly sure what this is all about and perhaps it's because there are some angry pro-capital punishment folks or some who simply hate a film with a mostly black cast. All I know is that the film is a quality production and kept my interest throughout.

The story is based on the work of Bryan Stevenson, a Harvard graduate who chose to move to Alabama and work for a small salary to help examine the convictions of men on death row...men who in some cases were not guilty at all. How could anyone NOT applaud this sort of thing?!

Overall, a brilliantly written film that made me sad and angry....and I love when a film effects me that way. The acting was top-notch, the story magnificent and the writing amazing. Just ignore all the negativity and see this one....you'll be happy you did. As for me, I'd consider this perhaps the best American film of the decade...it's THAT good.
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8/10
Totally shocking !
Lewis_Heather7871 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
I went into this film with no expectations at all, didn't even really know what the film was about, just saw the really exciting cast and I was in. Nothing would have prepared me for the totally shocking.....True Story......that was told in this film, it has stayed with me ever since I watched it.

I'm not sure I know enough words in the English dictionary to describe the total disbelief in the whole story and journey of Walter McMillian and Bryan Stevenson played by Jamie Foxx and Michael B Jordan respectively. Needless to say that I had never heard of the central case of this film involving Mr McMillian nor the incredible work of Mr Stevenson and his organisation. I think it definitely benefited my viewing experience because I really had no idea what was going to happen.

Wow what an emotional roller coaster in many respects. I have complete and utter disgust with the pathetic case that was brought against Walter McMillian in the first place...........basically the police needed to desperately catch someone so they intimidated another death row inmate to testify against an innocent man, so he could get a reduced sentence. Then there is the small fact of not using the witness accounts of black people who would prove Mr McMillian's innocence.........nor have any black people on the jury??!?!?!?

Then there is the other side of the emotion.............from disgust and almost anger, to just outright sadness...........this film is deeply horrifying and sad due to the nature of the subject matter...........the scene when Herbert Richardson gets executed, is a huge emotional punch to the gut..........it must also be said that the end credits are also just as educationally horrifying.............thankfully there are some silver linings!!

All of this going through my head is obviously due to the film being good........oh yeah did I not mention that..............why is the Imdb score so low???? The directing is solid but nothing mind blowing........it didn't need to be!!! The acting in this film is what just adds that extra special touch to elevate the film from good to great, for me!! Michael B Jordan, Jamie Foxx, Brie Larson all of whom are just great in the film..............no more to say!!!!!

Overall I am just shocked by the story, it took my breath away!! Being from the UK where the death penalty has not been accepted for quite some time..........it is completely dumfounding why its still used and accepted in the US?!?! Yeah those statistics at the end is almost vomit inducing. 80% out of 100 its a very good film highly recommend.............people need to hear this story, peoples eyes need to be opened.
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5/10
Read the book: the movie does not do justice to how deeply awful the true story is.
gravegauze19 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
I came away disappointed by the film adaptation of Just Mercy. This is probably a given, but the film adaptation is very overly-dramatized, and not completely true to the story. While this is expected, I find it in this case to be in somewhat poor taste considering everything is a portrayal of real-life people and real-life events.

Having read the book, you would see that the racism that actually took place was seriously watered down for the film adaptation. The film also touches on things from the book briefly but not enough to give you the entire picture or depth of the situation. For example, the film also briefly follows Herb, who is being executed for murdering a girl. While the film touches on his PTSD and having been a veteran, and "making a bomb", the film doesn't explain, like the book did, that it was illegal for the state of Alabama to execute Herb because he had no intention of killing anyone (he made the bomb as part of a convoluted plan to "rescue" his old girlfriend and win her back, but instead the bomb killed her young daughter). The state of Alabama executed him anyway after Stevenson's last minute appeal because it was "too late".

In the movie, Herb also has "no family" and gives his flag to Stevenson. In real life, he was surrounded by family, including a new partner who refused to give him up when he had to be taken away to be executed (by the way, his execution in the film is just a simple "thud").

I also found Jamie Foxx's portrayal of Walter McMillian to be wildly inaccurate. In the movie, he blows up upon first meeting Stevenson, and comes off as someone who is nonchalant about life at Holman Correctional Facility and knows everything about the decorum there. He even refuses Stevenson's services at first. In real life, Walter was traumatized by the conditions at Holman and during his case was desperately seeking Stevenson's attention over that of his fellow inmates.

There are several critiques I have for the film, but I don't want to spoil the central story. I strongly recommend you read the book instead, because you will walk away from it with a much more thorough understanding of our criminal justice system and what's really going on in America.
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9/10
Just Mercy - Corrupt and unequal justice system to the poor and minorities
brankovranjkovic22 January 2020
Intense courtroom drama based on actual events and based on the book by the same name, about a trainee lawyer who moves to Alabama to devote his career to defending the unfortunate community, the people who were not able to afforded appropriate defence (these were mostly black).

His first case was that of Walter McMillian, who was sentenced to death for the murder of a white woman. However, all the evidence showed that he was innocent, and it was more suspicious that the only testimony against him came from another criminal who was also on death row.

This film shows how corrupt the justice system can be, the poor and minorities are too often not treated equally. The post credit scenes tell you what happened to each of the people featured.

Highly recommended.
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10/10
Extremely moving, powerful.
emiliecunning-210945 October 2019
An important film for our times about racial injustice and the cruelty that is the US criminal justice system. Very moving and powerful. Wonderful performances from the two main leads - Jordan and Foxx, with strong supporting performances from Brie Larson and Rafe Spall. Recommend to anyone who wants to become a lawyer or is just interested in US politics and history.
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8/10
Great watch
imdb-ikysmoviedatabase9 September 2019
Very intense and gripping plot screenplay play is brilliant
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10/10
A Test of Emotional Endurance
view_and_review16 January 2020
"Just Mercy" is one of those rare movies for me where I actually read the book before seeing the movie. The book is absolutely incredible and my only hope was that the movie would do the book justice--and by extension of that, do Bryan Stevenson justice. The book "Just Mercy" is essentially a memoir from Bryan Stevenson about his life, post Harvard, aiding death row inmates in the South. He spends the bulk of the book on the specific case of Walter McMillian and his efforts to get him not only removed from death row, but to get him exonerated completely.

This movie will drag you down to the depths. It is not a movie that you plop down and watch, you have to mentally prepare yourself for the emotional toll that your psyche will take. "Just Mercy" mercilessly assaults your emotional cavity. It tests your emotional endurance. It will take you to the brink, and for some it will take them past the brink. At one point someone in the theater shouted, "---- you!" to the screen. I had no complaints because he only said what I was feeling.

After dragging its audience to the depths of anger, despair, and sadness it snaps them back with equal and opposite force. The pure unbridled elation that hits you is just as uncontainable as the anger and sadness moments before. I found myself in tears three times which for me has to be some kind of record.

This may all sound like a warning and it is to some degree. This is not a warning for you to avoid the movie, please go, it is a warning to bring your emotional shield, because should you go in there bare and uncovered it will rip your heart out before you finish the movie.
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10/10
Phenomenal
RAFoord23 January 2020
Fantastic movie from beginning to end. A story that needed to be told, and one that I am grateful to have been shown. This story is a tragedy of mis-justice with hopes of redemption throughout, a real roller coaster, I shed tears more than once. I would highly recommend this movie to be watch by anyone, I will be dwelling on this for quite some time, I'm now off to Google to read up on the real life character on which this movie is based, I have no doubt that afterwards you will be doing it too. Lastly I will add that I believe the current rating of this movie thus far is ridiculously low, I truly believe this is a story worthy of more than a 9, let alone its current 7.3.
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10/10
A must-see
spotsandstripes-7286118 January 2020
This is such an important and beautiful film. Performances from the main cast were without a doubt oscar-worthy. The story was told so diligently, I have so much respect for the incredible individuals working at EJI. It's a hard-hitting film but definitely worth the watch.
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9/10
Emotional and riveting!
perkinsmay6 January 2020
I saw this film tonight as a Screen Unseen at the Odeon Worcester, UK. I too don't understand it's low rating on this website. I was riveted and at times it was a hard watch because of the blatant injustice explored in it. The performances were first class and Michael B. Jordan has a stillness on camera, which is arresting and powerful. I cannot believe that this injustice happens and that this level of bigotry and racism escapes justice. Everyone who believes in justice for all, irrelevant of your race, social status and wealth should watch this film and I applaud the makers for bringing the story of this courageous lawyer to the big screen to highlight how these prejudices still exist in the home of the free'
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6/10
Underlying story line will make your blood boil, but the movie itself is too long and too uneven
paul-allaer18 January 2020
"Just Mercy" (2019 release; 136 min.) is "based on a true story" we are reminded in the beginning. As the movie opens, we get to know Walter McMillian a/k/a Johnnie D. and before we know it (as in: literally the first few minutes of the film), he is wrongly accused of a white woman's murder he didn't commit and is on death row. We then get to know Bryan Stevenson, an African-American law student at Harvard Law who is interning for the summer at a social justice place. Stevenson meets Johnnie D., who is disappointed that he is "just" a law student, and not a lawyer. Nevertheless they hit it off. We then go to "Two Years Later", and Stevenson, newly graduated from Harvard Law, is saying goodbye to his family in Delaware and about to drive down to Alabama, where he plans to work at the new Equal Justice Initiative... At this point we are 10 min. into the movie but to tell you more of the plot would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: in films like these, it is not always easy to distinguish the underlying story and the inherent quality of this as a movie-viewing experience. Let's be very clear: the underlying story will make your blood boil. Remember this is set in the late 80s and early 90s, and the systematic, pandemic and institutional racism and bigotry that existed in Alabama in those days is nothing short of appalling and shocking. Anything goes, and does. But did it translate into a top notch movie? The answer is... at times. There are some magnificent scenes in the movie, but there are also too many uneven moments. It is a darn shame that this movie wasn't edited a bit tighter, because its running time of 2 hrs. 16 min,. is way too long for its own good. I venture to say that a good 20-25 min. could have been cut without the movie losing and of its essence, and it probably would've made this a truly compelling viewing experience. (There is a reason this movie didn't gain a single Oscar nomination when they were announced earlier this week.) The movie is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, who has previously given us Short Term 12 and The Glass Castle (all starring Brie Larson, who also appears in "Just Mercy"' (albeit in an unremarkable, almost bland, role). Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx carry the movie on their shoulders as Stevenson and Johnnie D., respectively. Make sure you stay all the way through the movie's end credits, as we learn what has become of these people and where they are today.

"Just Mercy" premiered at last Fall's Toronto International Film Festival to good acclaim and after a limited release in December, the movie went wide last weekend. I finally saw it this weekend. The Friday early evening screening where I saw this at here in Cincinnati was attended okay (about 20 people). If you are interested interested in social (in)justice, I'd readily suggest you check this out, be it in the theater, on VOD, or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray, and draw your own conclusion.
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7/10
Promising Premise - Well executed, with minor flaws
FilmFlowCritics9 October 2019
This fantastic and gripping real story is made for the cinema! I wasn't aware of this great and inspiring person and I am glad this movie introduced me to him and his life story!

While this story is mixes a lot of ups and downs, you can still feel dread at times. This all though builds up to an extend that rewards you and the director is able to get that feeling of relief, camaraderie and courage transported to YOU in the audience, no matter if you are black or white.

The end credits will give you goosebumps, with the expected real life footage that reminds you again, that most of what you've seen in the last 2 hours, really happened to people. This is exactly the thought you should leave the cinema with. Sometimes, it only takes one kind person to have a huge impact!
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5/10
interesting story with too much fiction
edjas24 January 2020
Seeing the movie and then reading about the actual events was a stark contrast.exaggeration after exaggeration was in the movie. I really hate that! Why can t the story be truthful to the facts! It would still be a powerful story because it was factual. The movie as made is false in many ways which i will refrain from detailing except for one point which is the current prosecutor immediately recognized the injustice and did not pursue a retrial. a very interesting story of a true case with false dialogue and inaccuracies. this is what Hollywood does too often. I suppose one more point ,his alibi about being at a fish fry was not something new as presented in the movie but was in his trial and rejected. why can t they make a movie based on the facts!!!
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8/10
Excellent Performances In Compelling Movie
slightlymad229 January 2020
I just got out of an advanced screening of Just Mercy. I was surprised to see it was only half full. Normally these advanced screenings are almost sell outs.

I can't believe this blatant injustice was based on a true story, based off the lawyers book. Considering it is based on a true story, it is a bit precicfable at times, and you know where it is going most of the time. I also need to add, it is not a feel good movie at all, but I think most people will like it.

It is a very compelling movie, I was wrapped up in it throughout. Michael B Jordon is terrific, Jamie Foxx gives his best performance since Collateral and Ray!! Rob Morgan and Tim Blake Nelson offer solid support, whilst Brie Larson is also effective. Possibly my favourite performance from her.

It will be interesting to see if it gets any Oscar love, Foxx really deserves a best supporting nomination. I hope this finds an audience, it deserves to.
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10/10
Fantastic Movie based on real events
joshnorton-934716 January 2020
Great across the board. Acting, directing et al...

This is a story and a problem that needs more focus. Equal justice under the law for all Americans.
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9/10
Sometimes a movie is more than a movie
stephenmatlock19 January 2020
Warning: Spoilers
Sometimes a movie is just a movie. It entertains. It thrills. It chills. It amuses.

But sometimes a movie a slice of life so real that you are in the film, right alongside the characters, wondering if your own actions will help ensure the triumph of right over evil--and maybe a little bit scared that you will be the one with the flashlight and the gun and the key and the belt and access to the electrical switch.

I found myself in such a place with this movie. Sure, everyone likes to be the hero of their *own" movie--that's part of being human. But I was wincing and blinking at the sheer terror that is meted out to our brothers and sisters, casually, confidently, with the assurance that such cruelty is the way of the Lord. (The movie subtly weaves the church in with the injustice, noting that the presence of the community of believers is the effectual working out of injustice--it's planned and ordained by the Good Lord Himself. I'm a believer, and a sinner, and I'm daily appalled at the fallenness of my own people. But, that's a discussion for another time--it is not this movie's theme.)

I have seen Michael B. Jordan (Bryan Stevenson) in other movies, and have enjoyed his presence. (Who doesn't like him as Killmonger? C'mon.) I just want to say, his acting here is incredible--and perhaps because it is representational. His journey in this movie from holding a strong, confident belief that right will prevail through the middle where his confidence is broken to the end where he is wiser, grateful, but much more knowledgeable about how things "really work" is a sobering delight to watch. This is *acting*.

Jamie Foxx (Walter McMillan) is caged despair and rage and nearly erased hope. There is only a metal screen left in his world as the view to the rest of society, a society that saw him as guilty of capital crime a year before he was convicted. Any Black man can be picked up and criminalized because every Black man is guilty. That's the appalling truth at the end, spoken aloud to the audience in the courtroom because often the judge, jury, and audience want to believe that Justice-with-a-capital-J is what drives us. It's not justice, though. It's free-floating anger and fear, and it's revenge against an inchoate enemy. But God is good, y'all, and even though the system is set against the character of Walter--a touch of spring appears after a 500-year-long winter: Walter is finally seen.

The other characters are all fine, and I note with pleasure that this is a Black story centering Black characters with Black redeemers. This is not a white savior movie. (And thank God for that. Enough with movies like Green Book.) Brie Larson's Eva is an assistant who pops in when needed, and Tim Blake Nelson's Ralph is the pivotal villain who is manipulable in his fears by the system determine to find a Black man--any Black man--guilty. He's finally led to tell the truth. He is not the hero for doing so, but merely no longer impeding justice in his fears.

There is an awful secret in America about existing as Black, a secret that is discoverable if we have the slightest curiosity, and this movie does not demand that we see it. It does, however, provide an opportunity in the privacy of a darkened theater to consider whether we are going to seek our own ways, or if we will seek just mercy. And then, maybe, we'll decide to move.

Nine/Ten stars for a bit of over-the-top music and montages. They are wonderful to experience, satisfying conclusions of our own hopes at redemption, but I think in comparison to the rest of the movie they take us out the moment. It's not bad to do so, because it does ground us in our own reality. It is a slight fault in the craft of the movie-as-a-movie. Otherwise, the movie is just outstandingly created, shot by shot, in a way that leaves you breathless at the creativity and strength of the production team. Costumes are invisibly accurate to the times, and sets and lights are wonderfully done--it is difficult to light Black skin appropriately, but the combination of skillful lighting and filming keeps the actors from disappearing into shadow.
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10/10
Unexpectedly BRILLIANT
pat-ricethepirate12 January 2020
Not only did this movie exceed my expectations, it made me re-think a lot about life. I was hesitant because of the ratings, but I saw it anyways and was not disappointed! The acting, the story line, and everything about it was beautiful. MUST SEE
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10/10
Must see...
graceu7011 December 2019
Must watch.... everyday there are innocent people seating in jail without mercy that is wrongfully convicted
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8/10
Surely an acting oscar nomination in here somewhere.
steve-care13 December 2019
Dont know why this film has a low rating.

This true story about a young lawyer who uncovers miscarriages of justice a from discriminating legal system in the deep south, it has a great central performance by Michael B Jordan and is backed up by Jamie Foxx, who surely should be nominated for a best supporting actor Oscar come next year.
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8/10
Emotional Roller Coaster
lukyboy112 January 2020
Phenomenal job by Michael B. Jordan, and Jamie Foxx. Sad to see that we are still seeing this type of injustice. The only way this will be minimize is by educating ourselves and becoming lawyers, judges, politicians that will truly make a difference. Watching this movie most likely will make you angry, and emotional. We just need to better ourselves to make a difference in our communities.
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8/10
A story that needs to be viewed
enetgirl15 December 2019
Everyone should enlighten themselves and watch this movie.

And I just want to point out that these 7 reviews (not counting mine) average a score of 8.29. I don't know how they got a 5.7
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10/10
Just Mercy Is Just Riveting
jdianahall10 January 2020
Not since A Green Mile and Dead Man Walking have I sat glued to my seat before the theater screen to watch a prison-death-row movie. Let's be realistic--such stories can be depressing. While watching Just Mercy, sometimes I laughed and sometimes I cried. But the central message about the injustices in our justice system has to be recognized, reviewed and re-evaluated. The acting was superb and the action was paced slowly enough to draw us deeply into the characters in the story. The updating at the end brought closure for these characters but also a sense of urgency to demand equal justice for all.
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10/10
Moving and inspiring
gizmokin30 December 2019
Optimism prevailed at even the darkest times. Makes you want to stand up and fight for what is right.
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9/10
Great biopic with Oscar-worthy performances
TheTopDawgCritic22 January 2020
Rob Morgan as Herbert Richardson and Tim Blake Nelson as Ralph Myers gave stellar heart-felt performances, but I have to say imo this was Foxx's best performance and certainly Oscar-worthy. For that matter, all cast were great and played their parts convincingly. Directing, cinematography and score were all on point. I did however find the 136 min runtime about 15-20 mins too long. The pacing could've been a little faster and/or cut down many of the unnecessarily long scenes. Nevertheless, a very emotional and captivating biopic and certainly deserving of my 9/10
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