I watched the beginning of “Luce” with a sideways skeptical glance…as in, “Really? Why did I choose this movie? I don’t like dramas, real life holds plenty of drama.”
But dubiousness turned to respect as this intricate story seemed to be 90 percent (see below for the 10% baloney) possible in the real world.
Conversations between students (Kelvin Harrison Jr. being the lead), our society’s addictions to the f’n phones, arguments of spouses (expertly played by Naomi Watts and Tim Roth) and even school situations (BIG applause for Octavia Spencer’s performance as her character had the most to deal with script wise, minus my 10% exception) seemed very plausible. And in the latter, I have expertise being a school counselor and witnessing nuttiness from all sides (students, parents and yes, even teachers).
Did I love the movie? No, but I did respect the editing, music and aforementioned screenplay. So bravo to director Julius Onah who adapted the original play by J.C. Lee.
My malarkey radar went up at the freshly rehabbed sister subplot and her subsequent breakdown which would never have gotten that far out of control in a school foyer, and the old horror movie trope where no one calls the police about criminal matters wanting to solve it themselves.
The movie promised to have people arguing about moral issues that crop up and sure enough, my friend and I had respectful but different takes on the ‘shoulds and should nots’ of the story.