Clemency Reviews

  • Feb 11, 2020

    Acting is first rate! Really enjoyed this movie. The story was thought-provoking. I still approve of capital punishment in certain cases.

    Acting is first rate! Really enjoyed this movie. The story was thought-provoking. I still approve of capital punishment in certain cases.

  • Feb 08, 2020

    Tired of having people’s political views pushed on me. Don’t waste your time.

    Tired of having people’s political views pushed on me. Don’t waste your time.

  • Feb 08, 2020

    A powerful opening sets the tone for this Serious (with a capital S) indie film about capital punishment in which Alfre Woodard plays a prison warden whose steely exterior is slowly breaking down after years of overseeing death row executions. Undoubtedly well researched by writer-director Chinonye Chukwu, this is a grounded and deliberately frills-free look at the issue which is a million miles away from other films such as The Green Mile or Dead Man Walking. Touched upon only briefly, the innocence or otherwise of the prisoner is not really the point here. The script isn't really interested in the exoneration of the convicted, but instead is an indictment against capital punishment itself as a cruel and inhumane thing we are doing in the name of justice and humanity. Tackling it from the warden's POV, instead of the conventional approach which centres usually around the defence team, the film takes its audience through a rough and grim journey by showing the emotional and psychological toll it takes on everyone involved as it lays out the execution process as just another day at the office. The only misstep here is perhaps the slightly underwritten marital problems Woodard's warden faces at home whch never fully explains her need to carry on. Occasionally languid in its pacing, but Chukwu's camera lingering after scenes are played out, leaving the audience hanging uncomfortably on, allows them time to think and take it all in. It's a brutal approach that's effective and affecting, but as sobering and worthy as the film obviously is, it may end up preaching to the converted only and not be accessible enough for the wider audience it needs to make any real impact in the real world, despite solid work from talents both in front and behind the camera.

    A powerful opening sets the tone for this Serious (with a capital S) indie film about capital punishment in which Alfre Woodard plays a prison warden whose steely exterior is slowly breaking down after years of overseeing death row executions. Undoubtedly well researched by writer-director Chinonye Chukwu, this is a grounded and deliberately frills-free look at the issue which is a million miles away from other films such as The Green Mile or Dead Man Walking. Touched upon only briefly, the innocence or otherwise of the prisoner is not really the point here. The script isn't really interested in the exoneration of the convicted, but instead is an indictment against capital punishment itself as a cruel and inhumane thing we are doing in the name of justice and humanity. Tackling it from the warden's POV, instead of the conventional approach which centres usually around the defence team, the film takes its audience through a rough and grim journey by showing the emotional and psychological toll it takes on everyone involved as it lays out the execution process as just another day at the office. The only misstep here is perhaps the slightly underwritten marital problems Woodard's warden faces at home whch never fully explains her need to carry on. Occasionally languid in its pacing, but Chukwu's camera lingering after scenes are played out, leaving the audience hanging uncomfortably on, allows them time to think and take it all in. It's a brutal approach that's effective and affecting, but as sobering and worthy as the film obviously is, it may end up preaching to the converted only and not be accessible enough for the wider audience it needs to make any real impact in the real world, despite solid work from talents both in front and behind the camera.

  • Feb 07, 2020

    Incredibly moving, disturbing, frightening, sickening, where do i end? Alfre Woodard is at her utmost best. The system MUST change. The death penalty is undeniably, insanely wrong and archaic. ONE mistake, one life, is the reason for the "pro death penalty" individuals to change their minds. (Just Mercy is another story to awaken all those in favor of death.)

    Incredibly moving, disturbing, frightening, sickening, where do i end? Alfre Woodard is at her utmost best. The system MUST change. The death penalty is undeniably, insanely wrong and archaic. ONE mistake, one life, is the reason for the "pro death penalty" individuals to change their minds. (Just Mercy is another story to awaken all those in favor of death.)

  • Feb 04, 2020

    It was a slow burn movie. I recall a scene where we watch the actress stare off into space for five minutes. There were some good scene's, but it didn't hold my interest.

    It was a slow burn movie. I recall a scene where we watch the actress stare off into space for five minutes. There were some good scene's, but it didn't hold my interest.

  • Feb 04, 2020

    The devastating opening execution sequence sets the tone for a absorbing and relentlessly dark drama. Alfre Woodard plays a prison warden who's about to oversee her 12th execution. This film examines how it affects her professional and personal life. With Woodard in the lead, you can expect a moving performance and she delivers. Writer/director Chinonye Chukwu takes a pared down approach, which means the pace is deliberate and the observations are restrained. It's less about the injustice of a wrongful conviction than Just Mercy (my review) and more about the significant toll that state execution takes on those affected.

    The devastating opening execution sequence sets the tone for a absorbing and relentlessly dark drama. Alfre Woodard plays a prison warden who's about to oversee her 12th execution. This film examines how it affects her professional and personal life. With Woodard in the lead, you can expect a moving performance and she delivers. Writer/director Chinonye Chukwu takes a pared down approach, which means the pace is deliberate and the observations are restrained. It's less about the injustice of a wrongful conviction than Just Mercy (my review) and more about the significant toll that state execution takes on those affected.

  • Angela
    Feb 03, 2020

    I thought it was different and engaging. It was interesting to watch a movie depicted from the viewpoint of the Prison Warden.

    I thought it was different and engaging. It was interesting to watch a movie depicted from the viewpoint of the Prison Warden.

  • Stephanie W
    Feb 02, 2020

    Powerful. Simply heart-wrenching! The tears will flow watching this film.

    Powerful. Simply heart-wrenching! The tears will flow watching this film.

  • john
    Jan 30, 2020

    Saw it, was “Just OK”. No real action, felt more like a documentary on capital punishment. Suggest you see the movie “Just Mercy” instead.

    Saw it, was “Just OK”. No real action, felt more like a documentary on capital punishment. Suggest you see the movie “Just Mercy” instead.

  • Neal H
    Jan 29, 2020

    I couldn’t stay awake. I liked what I saw enough to try again, but if it was really that good I wouldn’t have to.

    I couldn’t stay awake. I liked what I saw enough to try again, but if it was really that good I wouldn’t have to.