In the midst of our country struggling between peaceful civil rights demonstrations, to violent riots and protests, and conflicting leadership decisions, it was great to step into the Gem Theater Sunday evening and get lost in a film filled with inspiration.
Based on true stories, Hidden Figures is the story about a NASA team of mathematicians, made up of African-American women, who played a vital role in the race against Russia to put a man in space in the early 1960’s.
Director Theodore Melfi, was originally given the opportunity to direct the upcoming Marvel Studios Spider-Man: Homecoming before he got wind of the story behind Hidden Figures. He was so intrigued by the story that he decided against Spider-Man.
“I withdrew from Spider-man and said I wanted to do this” said Melfi during an interview with Collider Video.
“I met with the producer and told her all the reasons why I should do it, she said yes, and there we are” Melfi continued.
The story was beautiful and enlightening. Melfi did a wonderful job taking the audience back to the early 1960’s with the excitement of space travel, but that was colored by racism, and sexism. I assumed the theme of the film was mainly directed on the struggle of racism, but to the my surprise, it mostly focused on sexism within the time period. It was also educational and brought additional information on the history we all heard about in history class.
As the film progressed,the story unfolded through the eyes of three extremely intelligent African-American women played by Taraji P. Henson (Empire), Octavia Spencer (The Divergent Series, Zoopotia), and Janelle Monae. The three stars did a wonderful job at bringing these not-so-famous heroes to life.
The moments of triumph in the film for the three man characters were sensational and emotional. As the movie introduced new conflicts, our heroes never faltered or bowed down to struggles society threw at them. It was inspiring and made me tear up more than once.
The rest of the cast was believable and authentic. Playing some of the best supporting roles I have seen on the big screen were Kevin Costner (Waterworld, Dances With Wolves), Jim Parsons (Big Bang Theory), and Kristen Dunst (Spiderman, Elizabethtown).
I find it fitting to see a film with this type of awareness being released during such a crucial time for Americans. I highly encourage everyone to take a break from social media and the news so you could venture out and watch a story of hope.
I give Hidden Figures a solid 5 out of 5 stars.