If I'm Being Honest

In a world where a felon, convicted of murder, is released early after serving her 20-year sentence she has one objective; rebuild her estranged relationship with her sister. In the Netflix original “The Unforgivable”, there is a hard road ahead for Ruth Slater, played by Sandra Bullock, as she battles “the system” and her past. The question becomes will she be able to pull her life together and overcome it all? There was not a lot of buzz about “The Unforgivable” before its release on Netflix but now this movie has people talking.  A quick spoiler free breakdown of Netflix, “The Unforgivable” might help you figure out if this movie should be worth your consideration!

 Fun Facts- This movie has a great cast but “The Unforgivable” success rests on Sandra Bullock’s shoulders and she does a great job carrying this movie. The story is simple, and I think that allows for very good Sandra Bullock performance. Her performance does not consist of heavy dialogue but instead relies on her physical acting ability. Bullock’s mannerisms, and facial expressions spoke volumes as a worn-down convict that does not want to be bothered with society but must in order to get to her younger sister. The fact that her role is not dialogue heavy makes for explosive scenes when she is called on to deliver her lines and make the audience feel what she is going through.  

 Hard truth- The Unforgivable has a cast that includes Viola Davis, Vincent D’Onofrio, Jon Bernthal and regretfully doesn’t give these great actors much to do. Vincent D’Onofrio’s character, a lawyer named John Ingram, takes on the task to help Ruth but literally disappears with no real explanation, not even his family could provide a solid reason for D’ Onofrio’s abrupt absence. Honestly it feels like he was moved out so Viola Davis could have some time to shine. She does have a scene where she gets to let loose but its quickly upended by the movie’s story line. As I noted before, this story is simple and that can be a good thing but when Jon Bernthal is barely utilized in the movie it leaves me to question if the story is too simple. There is an opportunity for Jon Bernthal to be more active in this movie, but the story chooses not to, and it feels like a missed opportunity. Another missed opportunity comes narratively when characters affected by the murder Ruth committed are made to feel like they could be a bigger part of the story. The characters are sold short when a clunky writing choice, in the form of a betrayal, sends the characters down a path that is forced, making the story and the characters a little goofy, when they had plenty of motivation that was organically written into the movie.  

 Truth Bomb- if I’m being honest, Netflix, “The Unforgivable” gets a spark. This is a good movie that I would recommend. Sandra Bullock’s performance is noteworthy, possibly Oscar nominations are in her future! At this moment “The Unforgivable” is trending on Netflix’s “top ten” list on the platform and I would agree it deserves the spot, but this movie is not without flaws. The poor use of big-name stars is a letdown. Seeing big actors on the marquee sets big expectations that regretfully, most of the actors are not allowed to try and meet and then there was a betrayal. Yes, a betrayal that comes out of “left field” and is put in the story to give a character motivation to act on an impulse but “If I’M Being Honest”, this insertion is bad writing. 

Take a look at our “Honest Rating System” and let us at I.I.B.H. know  what you think of Netflix,”The Unforgivable”! As of the time of this review, “The Unforgivable” is currently streaming on Netflix!

Leave a Reply