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Watch Free State of Jones 2016 online free streaming
True Civil War era story about a white Southerner who falls for a slave and consequently rebels against the Confederacy.
Free State of Jones movie full length review - Blood Show
This is my review of Free State of Jones (spoiler free)
After the staggeringly successful dystopian future franchise The Hunger Games director of the first one Gary Ross, returns but this time in truthful territory to tell the true story of confederate escapee Newton Knight (McConaughey), not showing as much award winning panache as he did in Dallas Buyers Club. At 139 minutes this drama is a bit long and throughout it has the power to bore and not to entertain, even the parts where there is extensive bloodshed aren't exciting they're just using the characters as cannon fodder to get a point across. Much like the worst civics lesson, this movie bores away at you until your reactions are dulled. Ross' intention in this was to make it as accurate as possible unfortunately for him it lacks the accuracy and also adds in wobbly drama and using action to stop it from getting to boring but he didn't succeed, as much as the characters were cannon fodder in the first Hunger Games but with the beautiful special effects and a lot of slow moments that proved to be a lot more exciting and sorry to say more truthful than this. This movie doesn't have special effects to deliver its derivative story it has beautiful countryside by this movie had the power to make the outstanding countryside of Mississippi a duller. One example of excessive cannon fodder comes at the first few minutes into the film when Newton's nervous son gets shot by the other army that Newton is fighting, in his rage he escapes the army that very same day, but you don't get to know Newt's son so the audience don't show the same emotional expression as he does in fact the audience will be dry faced at this point and also as the film goes on.
Feeling that the army did a hit-and-run on his he escapes and goes to search for a new army, unaware that when he does run away he'll become a traitor for leaving the confederate militia so as it goes on this feels more like a revenge story than a truth telling story of America's first traitor in the 1860s. So instead of bringing a tear to the audience's the eye they start to fall asleep as the story goes on its tedious run through time. There is one interesting thing about this it goes in a revolving door through different time periods so one point will be the 1860s and then the other part will be set 85 years later in the 1940s, during a court case about Newton's great, great grandson explaining to the court who he was unfortunately much like you'll be feeling they don't believe him. At first Newton's army starts off as just a couple of slaves and him as the leader there is Mahershala Ali's Moses looking more like a keel-toed shaman, than a slave who's ran away from his master, and Rachel (Mbatha-Raw) as the quietly valiant woman who also ran away from her home, Newton decides to keep her a maid around his house. As the story goes on feeling where is this all going? And more of the audience shuffling in their seats, we get to the exciting bits or well the action bit which are stealthily hidden but when they get there after constantly being on the run the story turns to bloodshed as if that will make it any better, so starting to look like an action packed summer blockbuster rather than the historical dram it should, be Newt is now fighting for himself instead of just for power.
From then on after he has his (insert title name here) things go into a downward spiral from here as the Ku Klux Klan come into play and as the rambling hero looses more of his soldiers due to them being killed by the white-sheeted ghosts certainly not as entertaining as the way Forrest Gump puts it. So he is now fleeing from both the militia coming to hang him and the KKK gang, still he manages to pull through and as this tedious story continues he continues to be on the run, in search of revenge for his son, showing that he would rather fight with the slaves, the freemen and the women than fight for the Union, in this muddled Robin Hood truth teller. Finally when get to the end with an abrupt stop to all the bloodshed and all the carnage we come to a calming as such when he has finished his fight for the State of Jones, Knight moves in with his second common-law wife Rachel which was frowned upon at the time but he just fought for freedom again showing that every single character was cannon fodder, much like the way Game of Thrones shows every character as being but this isn't as exciting, or as punctual. Ross could have had a challenge with this after The Hunger Games series but instead he goes for action wins with everything kind of style. Alex Proyas will be so proud.
Verdict: A weak, quasi-history rambler that takes the way of being a blood-drenched actioner instead of being a strong, powerful melodramatic truth teller.
4/10 dull and really quite silly.