Instead of having stuff jump at you, you have to search for it or feel it without truly realizing it: touches of genius are very present, but differ from the original style like the brutal insurrection scenes, cargo dumping scene, etc. As I recall, Amistad did not wow the theatrical audiences big-time. When it comes to historic and realistic movies, they have used about every possible subject. The current one in 1839 is Martin Van Buren who's probably best known for being the real founder of the Democratic party political machine. It is so much about context and moral ambiguity, and ultimately the tragic ridicule of the situation. Soon they have to stand trial for this revolt and the fact that they have murdered the crew. They are then held prisoner in Connecticut, and their release becomes the subject of heated debate.
Before his story is told the attorneys have to learn the language and Spielberg graphically portrays their struggle for communication. The two remaining steered the ship Amistad to Long Island where the whole story is discovered. In the midst of this are two abolitionists Stellan Skaarsgard and Morgan Freeman , who want the slaves to be free. I don't think the horror of the slave trade was more obvious as it was in those scenes. Instead, they are misdirected and when they reach the United States, they are imprisoned as runaway slaves. The most emotionally devastating episodes for me were the barbaric transporting and drowning of the slaves.
Of course he was the son of our second president John Adams and like his father refused to do even the normal political things that could have gotten him re-elected. Amistad is also a technical marvel. I liked almost everything about it, but explaining why will take some time. Freed slave Theodore Joadson Morgan Freeman wants Cinque and the others exonerated and recruits property lawyer Roger Baldwin Matthew McConaughey to help his case. What has to be remembered here is that the while slavery was legal, the importation of slaves had been banned for quite some time by 1839. Spielberg favorite Janusz Kaminski sets the film in a dark, somber mood when appropriate, and a visual setting when appropriate as well.
I don't recall that any were given or even suggested. The story is a gripping one, and one of extreme importance. They enlist the help of lawyer Matthew McConaughey, who tries to free them. The fact that it hasn't been told at least a dozen times makes it original, but doesn't make it easy to compare it to other similar movies of course. And it's that sense of reality that makes this movie so special. Ultimately, Amistad's greatest strength is that it avoids offering any easy answers and in that sense, does to subconscious issues about race and slavery what Kubrick's 2001 did to space travel and progress, albeit with more humanity and more accessible drama. You'll get to see the fort in Sierra Leone where the slaves were brought together to be shipped to the New World, you'll see a nice representation of the American cities of those days, you'll see the ships of that time.
How does one determine who is free? Then they are discovered by some American marine officers, who bring the ship into harbor and hand over the slaves to the local authorities. I believe that he and the African actor Djimon Hounsou should have been seriously considered for acting awards. I am also a big fan of Anthony Hopkins and remember him as a compelling actor long before his Oscar role. His chances for re-election in 1840 were not looking good to start with and he was exceptionally vulnerable to southern pressure. Ironically enough his last bid for public office was in 1848 as the third party presidential candidate of the Free Soil anti-slavery party.
Through various legal proceedings, the case appears before the Supreme Court, where it is argued by ex-President John Quincy Adams Anthony Hopkins. The acting is magnificent, mainly two amazing performances. Are the studios afraid of that subject or are they so racist, that they have never been able to come to terms with the abolishment of slavery? Even though a large part of this movie was shot in a court room, it also offered plenty of other sets. A good job all around. As an ex-President he was serving in the House of Representatives in 1839 one of only two whoever went back to Congress after their presidential term was up. One by Anthony Hopkins as former president John Quincy Adams an unusual turn for him, where he really soars , and the other by Djimon Hounsou later cast as Juba in Gladiator as Cinque being the true gem.
Cue abolitionists hiring young property lawyer Baldwin. Freed slave Theodore Joadson Morgan Freeman wants Cinque and the others exonerated and recruits property lawyer Roger Baldwin Matthew McConaughey to help his case. They certainly aren't suited for people who can't stand the sight of blood or very graphic violence, but excluding them from this movie would not only be a shame, it would harm the sense of reality. I do not attend more than a handful of movies a year at a theatre. The movie, however, belongs to Hounsou. Amistad is grand entertainment and a needed history lesson about man's need for and willingness to fight to be his own master. McConaughey is superb as the lawyer defending the Africans, Hopkins is sensational as the old Adams, Freeman is outstanding when used Spielberg vastly under uses his supreme talents , and the rest of the cast is stellar.
Storyline : Amistad is the name of a slave ship traveling from Cuba to the U. During the long trip, Cinque leads the slaves in an unprecedented uprising. Spielberg is not at his finest here, the courtroom scenes have a tendency to lag. The Africans depicted here are forbidden to be slaves in the first place. It is this emotional force that carries the film. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, as long as it is done properly and accurately, because these movies are often the only source of new knowledge for a lot of people once they have left school and even at school they hate history classes because they don't seem to understand the importance of it. Freed slave Theodore Joadson wants Cinque and the others exonerated and recruits property lawyer Roger Baldwin to help his case.
What I also liked was the acting. The ship is intercepted by the American navy and a messy trial ensues to see who has rights regarding the cargo, Spain, America. This movie is for so many reasons worth to be seen not once, but at least a couple of times , that it doesn't deserve anything less than an 8. Hounsou's portrayal of a man in an alien world who's only desire is to go back where he came from will sear your very soul. Perhaps the costuming was a bit overdone. Amistad gives us the portrait of two United States presidents. Yet, the mistakes of our forefathers must be examined in order to rectify current situations.