All in all, Trumbo is a good and solid movie to watch but I would rate it more as nice little gem to catch on Netflix if it is out.
The Good
  • Bryan Cranston is just fun to watch
  • Important and interesting story about Hollywood in the McCarthy era
  • Wonderful cast
The Bad
  • Classic case of good not great
  • Not really deserving an Oscar nomination
3.7Overall Score
Reader Rating: (0 Votes)

On my journey to the perfect pre-Oscar score (i.e. intending to watch every darn nominated movie in the race), I came across this hidden little Bryan Cranston show.

Generally speaking, I did truly enjoy this film – as it really resonates with movie geeks like myself. All along the movie, I kept researching the different scripts, movies, characters on screen and that was quite fun. The story of Hollywood and the pre-McCarthy communism hunt in the United States is certainly an important one – the fear of being “overrun” by the communist threat and “Moscow’s spies” led to the most ridiculous actions such as blacklisting the Hollywood Ten. And what I truly enjoyed in the display of this film was how it portrayed the 40s and 50s in its nuances – it was a time before global access to knowledge, so anything you see on screen is taken for granted and thus everyone who reads or sees any anti-communist pieces automatically whiteout just hates everyone associated with it – such as Dalton Trumbo. I still have to see Good Night and Good Luck but I assume the movie to hit a similar nuance of critically re-visiting this strange period in time when the House of Un-American Activities basically deemed everything threatening and communist to ensure that people lost their jobs, homes and livelihoods.
Courtesy of

Courtesy of

So let’s move on to the core of this film – the man who acts out Dalton Trumbo in such a proficient way (as it becomes evidently clear in the outtakes): Bryan Cranston. Clearly, there is nobody on earth who does not love Bryan “Walther White” Cranston – he is one of the great examples of utilizing his stellar TV performances into a reasonably good career on film. And here, he shows again his acting skills – he is cocky, pointed, intelligent, desperate, genius, repelling and he rocks an awesome stach. His performance is the centerpiece of the film and really carries the film forward which other than Cranston’s performance more feels like a (very good) HBO movie. Having said that the actors beside him all deliver a pretty stellar performance of which I mostly enjoyed John Goodman and Hellen Mirren who are both having a great time acting out their roles as Frank King and Hedda Hopper.

Now as I said, I did enjoy watching this film – but throughout the film I did think: it is not that good to really deserve a nomination for an Academy Award (even though Cranston is pretty darn good). But with the vast amounts of movies in 2015/16 under my belt, I do find this movie not particular outstanding (and Cranston’s performance for that matter) not worthy a nomination but we shall get to that in my Oscar reports.
All in all, Trumbo is a good and solid movie to watch but I would rate it more as nice little gem to catch on Netflix if it is out.

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