Denzel Washington is Rubin Carter, THE HURRICANE

22 03 2007

The Hurricane - Denzel

IS

The Hurricane

I have to admit, I have somewhat of a bias in favor of this man. Denzel Washington is, in my opinion, one of the most moving and powerful actors of our time. Perhaps my review of this movie will be affected by this sentiment. I feel however, that it deserves every word of the praise I am about to bestow upon it.

The hurricane is an emotionally charged true story of a man, Rubin Carter, who was wrongly sentenced to life in prison. He was sentenced, for a murderous rampage at a bar, which he did not commit. There are parts that are fictionalized. Certain characters are composites. Regardless, the movie is brilliantly executed. It tells the story of a man who loses hope in his own release but regains his hope, through the help of a boy named Lezra.

The character of Lezra is a key part of this story. He is from Brooklyn, but the audience is introduced to him as he lives with a group of canadians who thought he was bright and felt the urge to help him with his future, taking him in and teaching him how to read and write. The first book Lezra reads is a book called The Sixteenth Round, from Number 1 contender to #45472. The story is inspirational to him, and Rubin Carter becomes a sort of mentor for Lezra. It is not long before he enters into correspondence with Rubin, and eventually meets him.

I will not reveal any more about the plot, but suffice to say, the lives of these people become intertwined, and they become something like a family. To me, that is the most moving truth in this movie, more so then the scenes of anger from false imprisonment, of solidarity and strength against great adversity. It is the message that hate imprisons, but love will set you free.

The director is careful here, to keep the movie flowing with exceptional timing, and he succeeded brilliantly, because the tears will more than likely also be flowing down your cheek if you like this sort of movie. The story is simply present as a self evident truth, it doesn’t push emotions down your throat, it tells a story with such success that you cant help but feel a sense of compassion and joy at the journey of these people.

It doesn’t hurt that all the actors here do a wonderful job with the well written script. You can sense the indignation of Rubin at his imprisonment. You can see the respect and gratitude in the eyes of Lezra that he was given such a courageous  mentor. Denzel Washington is absolutely riveting throughout in his portrayal of a man whose spirit will be not be defeated.

Having spent some time in a cell myself, I can only imagine what spending 20 years in prison would be like. I can personally attest to the accuracy of the psychological condition of confronting yourself this kind of situation puts you in. It’s a case of what can not kill you making you strong.

Rubin Carters story is inspiring, this movie is a wonderful feature film adaptation of his story, and I recommend everyone see it. However, I also am aware of the controversy regarding Rubin Carter. This movie is seen by many as hiding the truth. Some feel that Rubin Carter really was guilty, and that his book, and this movie were written to hide the truth.

You can read about this here. I read through these accusations, and was not convinced in any way that Rubin Carter was guilty of murder because of them. These accusations seem to be more about defamation of character and finding a motive, than actual evidence against Rubin Carter.

I believe this is a case of people simply siding with the skeptic simply because they want to be known as seekers of truth. No one wants to feel victimized by believing in an inspirational story that could be all lies, so I think people believe these shallow accusations simply because they would rather not deal with cognitive dissonance of not being sure.

The real story is, we can not prove beyond a shadow of a doubt either way. However, Rubin Carter is out of prison, he has inspired many, and he is contributing to society in a meaningful way as a motivational speaker. I would say that he has been rehabilitated, and isn’t that what prison is for?

This Cal Deal guy, behind this so called revelation ,about the “truth” of Rubin Carter, seems to be promoting a ploy for publicity. A rather successful attempt at becoming famous as a Trial Exhibit Consuleing and Design expert. There is no better way to become a rich trial consultant than by making a public attack on both Rubin Carter and Denzel Washington. He even went as far as attempting to make sure that Denzel did not get an oscar, sponsoring No Oscar protests.

Basically, fuck him. Hes just a bullshitter, out to make himself rich by the defemation of others.

This movie was outstanding. Denzel Washington is an outstanding actor. We you believe the events happened as shown in this movie is irrelevant. See this movie, goddamn it.

Until next time.

Johnny Blaze, out.