The Unforgivable (2021) Movie Review ‘Tense Hard-Hitting Drama’

The Unforgivable – Tense Hard-Hitting Drama


Director: Nora Fingscheidt

Writer: Peter Craig, Hillary Seitz, Courtenay Miles (Screenplay) Sally Wainwright (TV Series)

Starring: Sandra Bullock, Viola Davis, Vincent D’Onofrio, Jon Bernthal, Richard Thomas, Linda Emond, Aisling Franciosi, Will Pullen, Tom Guiry

Plot: A woman is released from prison after serving a sentence for a violent crime and re-enters a society that refuses to forgive her past.

Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: The Unforgivable starts when Ruth Slater (Bullock) gets released from prison, looking to start a fresh life, being told to avoid contact with anyone surrounding the crime she is locked up for, while the victim’s family Steve (Pullen) and Keith (Guiry)aren’t happy that the father’s killer is free.

As Ruth looks to start her new life, she meets a few people who will help her, Blake (Bernthal) and turns to lawyer John Ingram (D’Onofrio) for help finding a lost relative, but her past will always be haunting her and her chances at a fresh start.

Thoughts on The Unforgivable

Characters & Performances – Ruth Slater is the woman that has spent the last 20-years in prison, in that time she has wanted one thing, to see her little sister again, now free she must find her feet and locate someone that would help her, while facing the consequences of the crime she committed. She will become a target, while putting her freedom on the line to get back on with her life. Sandra Bullock is brilliant in the leading role here, showing the calmer side to her, while holding back the desperate side to everything. Liz Ingram is the wife of John who doesn’t want anything to do with Ruth, while John is willing to offer her help in her search, but knows it is a long shot. Viola Davis and Vicent D’Onofrio are both great in their roles, showing a similar mindset than what is expected towards a criminal freshly released from prison. Steve and Keith Whelan are the sons of the victim, they want revenge with Steve slowly putting together the plan to come after Ruth. Will Pullen is excellent with this brooding performance in the film. When it comes to the sister Katherine, she has her own life now, one with little memories of what happened in the past, with her new parents always wanting to watch over her and protect her from the truth.

StoryThe story here follows a woman released from prison that is trying to put her life back together after her crime, which will see her facing the consequences of people that haven’t forgiven her, while trying to reconnect with her younger sister. This is a story that will ask the bigger question about how criminals are treated once they are released after doing their time, seeing the reputations being used to show the impossible ability to get on with their lives, while focusing on the family that lost a loved one and what it caused them. With plenty of emotional stakes at play here, we are also teased through the whole film about what happened in the incident, which can get repetitive along the way.

ThemesThe Unforgivable is a drama thriller that will focus on a new life for a criminal, one that is always difficult, with the added tension of needing to watch her back from people who claim to know her reputation. The locations are used to show the type of places she would need to work and live to get back on her feet, while seeing the people she needs help from, having everything together in their lives.

Final Thoughts The Unforgivable is a tense drama with a stunning performance from Sandra Bullock.

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