Writer: John McNamara (Screenplay) Bruce Cook (Book)
Starring: Bryan Cranston, Diane Lane, Helen Mirren, Michael Stuhlbarg, David Maldonado, John Getz, Laura Flannery, David James Elliott, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Alan Tudyk, John Goodman, Stephen Root, Roger Bart, Ellie Fanning
Plot: In 1947, Dalton Trumbo was Hollywood’s top screenwriter, until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs.
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Good History Lesson
Story: Trumbo starts with Dalton Trumbo (Cranston) a registered communist who classing with other people in Hollywood including heavyweights John Wayne (Elliott) on his beliefs that that the government shouldn’t be able to look into everything the American people do. Even with these beliefs Dalton gets one of the biggest deals any writers have ever been offered in Hollywood.
The government decides to take on the communists in Hollywood believing they are trying to use movies to pull in the audience to join them. Gossip writer Hedda Hopper (Mirren) wants to use her column to expose the communists while leaning on the head of studios to fire all the communists involved in the infamous Hollywood 10 as they look to defend themselves.
After being sent to prison for his beliefs he ends up having to rebuild his career and he turns to Frank King (Goodman) who can’t pay the writers the same level but he and the blacklist writers all work to get their screenplays around Hollywood.
Trumbo gives us a look at the Americans and how they treated the people involved. I never personally understood what all this communist un-America talk really was and still don’t know enough to true judge how well this film portrays it all. I did like the story being re-told in a good way showing how even when people bring people down they won’t stay down however hard it is on the family. This really just more on a history lesson but is important.
Bryan Cranston: Dalton Trumbo was one of the most respected writers in Hollywood who was a communist, he gets charged for his crimes ending up in prison. Once released he ends up leading the fellow blacklisted writers in a movement to get themselves recognized in Hollywood once more. Bryan is brilliant in this role fully becoming the character.
Diane Lane: Cleo Trumbo is the wife of Dalton she tries to keep the family together while Dalton stands up for his beliefs, she stands up to him when needed without coming off over demanding. Diane is good in the supporting role but doesn’t get too much screen time.
Helen Mirren: Hedda Hopper is the gossip writer who along with John Wayne tries to out all the communist employees in Hollywood, she goes out her away against Dalton even when he starts trying to make a comeback. Helen is good but we don’t see enough of her to learn enough about her character.
Support Cast: Trumbo has great supporting characters who are all names the fans of Hollywood would enjoy watching.
Director Review: Jay Roach – Jay gives us a good and important story that we would need to know to see the struggles of the people who were outed as communists.
Biographical: Trumbo gives us a great look at one of the most important screenwriters of all time.
Settings: Trumbo re-creates the settings to make everything look like we are part of the time period.
Suggestion: Trumbo is one to try, I do think some people will find it difficult to watch but it is a good lesson. (Try It)
Best Part: Cranston is brilliant.
Worst Part: We don’t learn enough about Hedde.
Believability: Based on the real story of Dalton and the communist time period.
Chances of Tears: No
Chances of Sequel: No
Post Credits Scene: No
Awards: Nominated for 2 Golden Globes
Oscar Chances: Could easily get nominations
Runtime: 2 Hour 4 Minutes
Tagline: When they tried to silence him, he made the world listen.
Overall: Brilliant story even if we only see one side of it all