Richard Jewell is a 2019 drama film directed & produced by Clint Eastwood (Mystic River, Unforgiven, The Mule, & Million Dollar Baby). It’s based on the true story. It was adapted from “American Nightmare: The Ballad of Richard Jewell” article & “The Suspect: An Olympic Bombing, the FBI, the Media, and Richard Jewell, the Man Caught in the Middle” book. It was written by Billy Ray (Terminator: Dark Fate, Gemini Man, Overlord, & Color of Night). It was produced by Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street, Out of the Furnace, Robin Hood, & The Aviator) & Jonah Hill (21/ 22 Jump Street, The Sitter, Maniac, & Mid90s). The budget was $45 million & it grossed $43.2 million worldwide at the box office.
In 1986, Richard Jewell (played by: Paul Walter Hauser from BlacKkKlansman, Super Troopers 2, Cobra Kai, & I, Tonya) works as an office supply clerk in a small public law firm where he builds a rapport with attorney Watson Bryant (played by: Sam Rockwell from Iron Man 2, The Green Mile, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, & Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri). He leaves the firm to pursue a law enforcement career. At some point he’s hired as a sheriff’s deputy, but ends up discharged. In early 1996, he’s working as a security guard at Piedmont College, he is fired after multiple complaints of acting beyond his jurisdiction. Jewell later moves in with his mother Bobi (played by: Kathy Bates from Misery, Dolores Claiborne, American Horror Story, & The Waterboy) in Atlanta. In the summer of 1996, he works as a security guard at the Olympic Games, monitoring Centennial Park. In the early morning of July 27, 1996, after chasing off drunken revelers during a Jack Mack and the Heart Attack concert. Jewell notices a suspicious package beneath a bench, which an explosives expert confirms contains a bomb. The security team including police officers, FBI agent Tom Shaw (played by: Jon Hamm from Mad Men, Baby Driver, The Town, & Tag), & Jewell’s friend Dave Dutchess (played by: Niko Nicotera from Sons of Anarchy & Secret in Their Eyes) are moving concert attendees away from the bomb when it detonates. Jewell is initially heralded as a hero. Shaw is approached by journalist Kathy Scruggs (played by: Olivia Wilde from House, A Vigilante, The Lazarus Effect, & TRON: Legacy) of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution. In exchange for sex, Shaw reveals that Jewell is under FBI suspicion. The Constitution publishes Scruggs’s story on the front page, disclosing the FBI’s interest in Jewell as a possible suspect. Scruggs makes particular note of Jewell’s physique, the fact he lives with his mother, & work history to reassure herself that he fits the FBI’s profile. The story quickly becomes international news. Jewell, initially unaware of his changing public perception is lured to the FBI office. He phones Watson Bryant for legal representation. The FBI searches Jewell’s home & seize property including true crime books with a cache of firearms. Bryant & his long-suffering secretary Nadya (played by: Nina Arianda from Goliath, Billions, Tower Heist, & Hannibal) time the distance between the phone booth & bomb site, concluding it is impossible for someone to phone in the bomb threat plus discover the bomb at the time it was found. FBI changes their picture of the crime to include an accomplice. As their case weakens, the FBI try to link Dutchess to Jewell as a possible homosexual accomplice. Richard & Bobi have been going through a personal hell during this whole tragic event. Can they survive everyone against them & prove them wrong to clear the family name????
Richard Jewell goes over the tragic story of a man being wrongly accused for a horrible crime where he actually saved lives at. He fit the profile so they tried their best to make him the madman behind the bombing. Paul Walter Hauser transformed himself into the real life person for this true event. He gained more weight to look exactly like him. He got snubbed when it came to award nominations for this impressive performance. Kathy Bates was great in this & she was the one everyone recognized for this when it came to awards. Personally, I think the most under-rated role & actor in this was Sam Rockwell. He was top notch in this film & he honestly made everyone around him better. Jon Hamm & Olivia Wilde were both solid, they are always consistent. Clint Eastwood proves once again that he’s one of the best director’s around. I love how personal he gets with his recent projects. He picks them for own interest & he’s not even worried about how popular or how much money it will make. This one kinda flew under the radar. It was really good & it kept your attention the entire time, RECOMMENDED!!!!
Let’s talk about the high definition presentation from Warner Bros! This 1080p (2.39:1) transfer looks fantastic on blu ray. It captures the late 90s perfect & the locations are spot on for this. It has a variety of audio options which includes English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1, & Portuguese: Dolby Digital 5.1 on the release. It sounds great with all the concerts from the time & the tragic bombing. All the dialogue is crystal clear, all the chaos is elevated, & all the music has a killer boost here. It also has English SDH, French, Portuguese, & Spanish subtitles.
Let’s discuss the special features from Warner Bros! “The Making of Richard Jewell” is almost 7 minutes. It has interviews with director Clint Eastwood, actors Kathy Bates, Olivia Wilde, Sam Rockwell, Paul Walter Hauser, & various members of the production. They chat about re-creating everything for this true story. They talk about filming in real locations where it took place & using cameras to make it look like the late 90s during certain scenes. They mention why they wanted to make this & how it was important for others to know this story. “The Real Story of Richard Jewell” is a little over 6 minutes. It has interviews with the same group above plus the real life Bobi Jewell & Watson Bryant. They chat about the real life story & Richard Jewell. They all say he was a great man that went through hell for nothing. They talk about people to this day still think he was the bomber & this movie needed to be made. It also includes a slipcover & a digital code. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!