Deadline - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Deadline Reviews

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July 13, 2015
If the story wasn't true, the treatment of this tragedy would be laughable. It wouldn't even be worthy as a TV movie. Even the music was clumsy and uninspiring. Except for Eric Robert's participation, and Jeremy Childs as Editor Walker Burns, all of the acting seems flimsy and fake. "Wallace Sampson" deserved better.
January 3, 2015
superb simple twist turn everywhere
May 27, 2014
Great, encouraging story! Justice wins out. Based on true story.
September 26, 2013
This one is available on Netflix and it was surprisingly good, more so when I found out it is inspired by true events! Apparently the real crime took place in a small South Carolina town and was not investigated for decades. In the film a black 18 year old named Wallace Sampson (Romonte Hamer) is shot to death in rural Alabama. The case goes uninvestigated, unsolved, and unpunished for almost twenty years. That changes when Nashville Times reporter Matt Harper (Steve Talley) meets an idealistic young blueblood named Trey Hall (Lauren Jenkins) bent on discovering the truth. Harper undertakes the investigation despite the opposition of his publisher, violent threats from mysterious forces, a break-up with his fiancée, and his father's cancer diagnosis. Recommended...
½ July 3, 2013
screw what everybody else say's it not that bad
½ December 30, 2012
A film with some of the worst acting ever seen, Deadline (an AWFUL title) came across as a bad student film destined for a very short theatrical release. Saw this in Tennessee, and figured it's only in theaters here hoping to capitalize on the that it was filmed here.

Clichéd dialogue, stereotypical characters & unbelievable story development plague this film "inspired by a true story". Felt like a film from the 60s, not one from 2012.

There are many great films dealing with racial issues, but this is not one.

But it was great to Eric Roberts, who was the lone bright spot.

March 5, Addendum Note the two new "positive" user reviews are from the same person. Click on Cole and you'll see that the reviewer's name is Leslie Hutchens! My hunch is she worked on the film or is related to someone that did.
August 21, 2012
I caught this when it was in the theater and really enjoyed it. The story is gripping and Eric Roberts, Steve Talley and J.D. Souther (who knew he was an actor too!) are excellent. A very interesting look into what can still happen in our country that makes you wonder where we'd all be without local newspapers and investigative journalists.
July 29, 2012
As a Black Person I was bias towards this film, there was nothing special about it other than it was based on true events and that made it all the more emotional for me, especially since I hate racism in any form.
July 26, 2012
Saw it and enjoyed it. The story was quite well presented but more importantly the entire thing was entertaining to watch. No car chases or mindless and stupid behaviour throughout the entire show.
July 18, 2012
'Deadline' is a movie about a young person determined to investigate the unsolved murder of an African American child twenty years ago. It's a compelling story and must see drama that will grip you fro start to finish!
½ July 17, 2012
Did not know what to do last night and happened to see a buddy of mine liked Deadline on facebook. I checked it out for a new bucks on iTunes and was shocked! Way better than I thought, and I'm a tough cookie when it comes to dramas. Not sure why its got a bad rep on here but its a sold film!
½ April 19, 2012
Though I am aware that I didn't see the "final cut" of the film, I don't think that an editor can really save it. A majority of Deadline's issues are within the writing. Deadline isn't really sure what kind of movie it wants to be. The tone is uneven throughout the entire film, forcing laughs and forcing emotions. At times, it feels like we're watching reporter Matt Harper (Steve Talley) and his co-worker Ronnie Bullock (Eric Roberts) in a buddy-cop journalist movie. We start with a young boy getting shot and then segue right into a scene with Harper cruising through Nashville in his Nissan 350Z, with some loud classic rock in the background. The movie tries to keep it light but ultimately feels like it doesn't care about the main murder, just like Matt Harper doesn't seem to.

That's another issue I have with the movie. The film's protagonist, journalist Matt Harper, is not a likeable character at all. He blows off his fiancee (a flat character that they awkwardly work in to the rest of the film as his helper) and his hospitalized father to work on a case that will either make or break his career. His publisher and editor are against the unsolved murder story yet, for some reason, Harper continues on against their wishes. The film doesn't show, until the very end, that he actually gives two shits about the murdered boy and the people involved. It would appear, to the audience and to his fiancee, that he only took on the story because of a hot young blonde woman (Lauren Jenkins) who brought it to his attention and he decided that it could be a huge story. There's the slightest bit of sexual tension between those two and then it is forgotten for the rest of the movie.

The film is filled with forgettable scenes including countless (and often pointless) jumps from Amos, Alabama to Nashville, Tennessee. Intelligence-insulting dialogue masquerades as exposition but it really just reiterates what the audience already knows. In all honesty, this movie feels better suited to an episode of some hour-long drama on television. The direction even feels more like television than film. There are a lot of odd shots, which doesn't surprise me considering Director Hahn has only done documentary work prior to Deadline.

There are a few memorable scenes but they are mostly remembered with a hint of nausea. There's a protest scene where Harper finally shows any non-job-related concern for the town of Amos and the scene ends with a long, retreating shot of Harper and his fiancee reconciled and kissing amidst the protestors. Another favorite is in the end at the court room, when claims are being made about the murderer and each one (saved just for the end, so grab your Kleenex!) is more shocking than the last. I couldn't help but laugh at moments that should not be funny but the insincerity of this film's creators is most prominent.

There's no real message or point behind this movie. In fact, it doesn't even live up to its title. There's no actual deadline in the film, the reporters are working on their own time. Deadline is a cheap attempt to pull at your heart strings, plain and simple. Plenty of other movies have featured a similar story and done so with genuine heart and a worthwhile message. Folks, this one isn't worth your time or money!
March 13, 2012
What a wonderful story! I enjoyed this movie over the weekend & encourage others to check it out as well. It is definitely a film that leaves you thinking & probably need to watch again. The local Tennessee talent shines for sure! Don't miss out on this one if you haven't seen it!
March 10, 2012
Read the book this film is based on by Mark Ethridge.. Trailer makes look like a good adaptation.
March 10, 2012
Good independent movie. Plot was good and suspenseful.
½ February 29, 2012
Great movie and great story!
½ February 20, 2012
Thought provoking and stunning piece on racial tensions of the deep south. Eric, Steve, and Anna carry you into the chilling world of political power over enduring souls. The honesty and purity of the piece makes it a must see of the season!
January 31, 2012
I went to a pre-screening of this film. Very well done and a great story!
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