I'm definitely a sucker for a good action movie where the protagonists exact righteous vengeance. We're talking movies such as "Die Hard," or "Taken," or "John Wick."
"Widows" is the newest installment of the subgenre.
Widows | Official Trailer [HD] | 20th Century FOXYouTube
"Widows" is written and directed by Steve McQueen and stars one of my favorite actors, Viola Davis as Veronica, the main protagonist. The film also features Liam Neeson, Daniel Kaluuya, Michelle Rodriquez, and Elizabeth Debicki. The performances all around are just great, and there's really no other way to say it. There's a legitimate possibility that both Kaluuya and Viola Davis earn nominations for their roles.
Kaluuya was absolutely phenomenal in "Get Out" as the main protagonist, but his ability to be in a supporting role, playing an antagonist speaks volumes to his talent as an actor. I absolutely despised his character because of the fact that he was such a great antagonist.
Viola Davis in a lead role is always a sight to see as well. She continual plays her characters with genuine conviction and it's obvious on screen, especially in this role. She's seemingly always cast in roles that require a lot of emotional turmoil, and this one is no different. Davis tackles it with great enthusiasm and she definitely deserves a nomination for her performance.
In terms of the writing, this action film is really unlike any other. Three women who are wed to professional thieves end up losing their husbands after one job goes bad. Now, the women are called upon to repay the debts that their husbands created, or dire consequences could occur. They then find themselves wrapped up in a local election, politics, the mob and even more.
What I love so much about the writing is the people who you quickly assume are the protagonists in the first act turn into something totally different. There was no way I could have guessed the twists that occurred, or even that there were twists in the first place.
In terms of symbolism, there really isn't too much in an action film such as this one. However, I do theorize that each of the widows represents a way that people deal with grief and the loss of a loved one. Grief and how to deal with it is really a theme throughout the whole film when considering the entire movie is predicated around loss.
Is it worth it?
"Widows" is a very complete film that any action fans will enjoy. It stands a decent shot at being nominated for Best Picture, and would definitely not be a mistake on your next trip to the movies.
Final score: 8.8/10