The great thing about movies is they often shine light on amazing people or bring to our attention issues that need to see the light of day. Last holiday season did not disappoint in doing both.
Three noteworthy 2019 films offer audiences not only Oscar-worthy performances but also a great deal of food for thought: “Harriet,” “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” and “Richard Jewell.”
“Harriet” not only gives us important information about the beginnings of a courageous 19th century freedom fighter but finally addresses a long-standing omission in our historical knowledge.
“A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” moves our hearts and reaffirms the power that one ordinary person holds when they take the time to listen and offer genuine love and compassion to another soul.
And, “Richard Jewell” stirs our sense of righteousness as we witness an injustice that took too long to correct.
Growing up in the American public school system in the 1960s and 1970s, one topic was standard for U.S. history classes: the American Civil War. Key themes always included the causes of the war, the Gettysburg Address, significant battles, and, of course, the presidency of Abraham Lincoln. Though some textbooks noted the “Underground Railroad,” it was not a major focus in the schools I attended. If abolitionist Harriet Tubman was mentioned at all, it was more as an historical footnote than spotlighting a woman who helped bring hundreds of slaves to freedom.