Miss Virginia (2019) Movie Review

Director: R.J. Daniel Hanna

Writer: Erin O’Connor (Screenplay)

Starring: Aunjanue Ellis, Matthew Modine, Vanessa Williams, Adina Porter, Uzo Aduba, Amirah Vann

Plot: A struggling inner-city mother sacrifices everything to give her son a good education. Unwilling to allow her son to stay in a dangerous school, she launches a movement that could save his future – and that of thousands like him.


Tagline – Be Brave. Be Heard. Believe.

Runtime: 1 Hour 42 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Story: Miss Virginia starts as we meet Virginia Walden (Aduba) a mother of James (Fitch) who has started to have his head turned by the local gangs, not having focus in a dangerous school, she tries to enrol him in a better school, forcing her into two jobs, still not enough to pay for, while working under congresswoman Lorraine Townsend (Ellis).

After learning the process for change in the school system is mostly getting passed over by everyone in congress, Virginia looks to make a difference herself, trying to pull together the community, to go against congress herself.

Thoughts on Miss Virginia

Characters – Virginia Walden is a single mother believing her kid is attending and getting through school, until she learns the truth he has been skipping school, being drawn to a life of crime, she wants to make a difference, first by doing two jobs, but she simply can’t afford the better school, before deciding to fight and work with congress to try and make a difference. Lorraine Townsend is the local congresswoman that shows an interest in changing things, only she doesn’t always have the follow through the make the change. Congressman Cliff Williams is the one that will eventually start working with Virginia to try and make a change, he has done so in other states in the past, but he does explain how the system works and how difficult it would be to make the change. We get to meet different members of the community that will help, while others will hinder.

PerformancesUzo Aduba in the leading role is brilliant to watch, her performance is filled with the determination to make a change, while showing glimpses of fear about what that might mean for everyone else involved. Matthew Modine and Aunjanue Ellis takes the main supporting roles and bring both their characters to life, but only in the way you would imagine Virginia seeing them being bought to life.

StoryThe story here follows a single mother that decides to take a stand to help her son get the chance of going to a better, less dangerous school, in a system which has seen countless children not given the chance of a better life, she challenges congress to make a difference. This is based on the real woman Virginia Walden who did fight for change, we see the struggle of trying to get everything through a system that is filled with so much tape it isn’t as easy as doing the right thing, but it will show what parents would do to give their children a better future. This is an important look at what a community could come together to achieve and does show that people will understand the bigger things in life.

SettingsThe film uses the settings to show us the poorer neighbourhoods in which Virginia came from, ones that wouldn’t be given the chances at more in life, compared to the rich golf course locations the congressmen would spend their days in and around.


Scene of the Movie – The results.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Some of the teachers don’t seem interested in the change.

Final Thoughts Very important drama with powerful performances throughout, showing us how people can make a difference in life.

Miss Virginia is on Digital HD 5 October from Signature Entertainment