I mean, it is Spielberg, so there are great production values, and John Williams has a good score, but the acting and some of the casting just doesn't totally come together for me. I do think this is an alright movie though, even if the story does deserve a better telling.
Whilst it was Anthony Hopkins who received an Academy Award nomination for his role in this film (which was very worthy) it was Djimon Hounsou, yet again with a very impressive performance who grabbed my attention.
Powerful, lengthly, but quite a film!
As soon as I saw the stellar cast that was in "Amistad" and that it was made by Steven Spielberg, I couldn't wait to see this movie. It is a good movie based on real historical events, but when compared to Steven Spielberg's previous masterpieces, "Amistad" isn't as good as it could've been. It's one of the very few Steven Spielberg movies that hasn't been dubbed as a classic by just about everyone that has seen the movie. But even though it might have come on one of Spielberg's off days, it's still a good movie. The best things about it are the good acting, its stellar cast, and its realistic approach to history. It also has a great speech by Anthony Hopkins toward the end of the movie.
I recommend anybody who likes movies that are based on history to at least watch "Amistad." NOTE: That was my Amazon review from the year 2001.
Amistad is a slave ship travelling from Cuba to the US in 1839, carrying a cargo of African slaves. As the ship is crossing from Cuba to the US, a mutiny takes over the ship. The slaves continue to sail, hoping to find help when they land. Instead, when they reach the United States, they are imprisoned as runaway slaves and the death sentence seems certain. Enter a rescue in the shape of Hopkins (President John Quincy Adams), who makes an impassioned and eloquent plea for their release.
President Speak: "This man is black. We can all see that. But, can we also see as easily, that which is equally true? That he is the only true hero in this room."