The Book of Henry is certainly not a good film, but calling it a bad one doesn’t seem to fit; it falls short of the mark, but not in the way a truly bad film does. Rather, it fails to answer two vital questions—who is it for, and what is it about?—and it’s hard to imagine anyone being satisfied with the end result.
Spotlight is the kind of film I would probably review as part of a 8- or 10-review package, but for the fact that, as it stands now, it’s a solid front-runner for Best Picture and the overwhelming front-runner for Best Original Screenplay. And for that, I need to discuss it in greater detail. Because I don’t totally agree with or even understand its status as such.
Now, this isn’t a case like Argo. This doesn’t fall laughably short of Best Picture status. I saw it a second time, in order to gain a more objective opinion of it, and I must say–it is a pretty good film. But a masterpiece it is not.
It’s good history. It’s not great drama.