The Charger

Marshall: Chadwick Boseman stars as real life superhero Thurgood Marshall

Taiah Guess, news editor

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Initially I honestly didn’t care about this film, I assumed that it would be a reenactment of the same story I’ve heard every February of my life :I thought that this would be an afterschool special about equality and discrimination desperate for Oscar nod. Thurgood Marshall is one of the many faces of the civil rights movement, people are familiar with the Brown vs. Board of Education and how he made history as the first African American Supreme Court judge. Many people aren’t knowledgeable about his life prior to this and the film does an excellent job of showcasing this. The film allows viewers to see how certain events shaped his mindset and gave him the strength and courage to fight against injustice. Chadwick Boseman stars as Thurgood Marshall in his third biopic, the rising actor also played other influential African Americans.  Along with Boseman Sterling K. Brown , Kate Hudson and Josh Gad put their hearts into every scene. Marshall is a young and vibrant attorney taking on a case in which Joseph Bell is accused of rape and attempted murder.

This reminds me of how “Selma” (released in 2014) depicted Martin Luther king’s involvement in the fight for voting rights.  This choice in both scenarios was made to build upon characters without having to detail each and every aspect. I also thought it was interesting to see how both of the movies chose moments that are often overlooked. Whether the frame is in a wide shot or extreme closeup, see how their emotions pour out onto the screen. The film transports viewers to the 1940’s with beautiful set and costume design. Although the clothing and technology is very dated, the atmosphere surrounding Thurgood is very relevant to modern society.  The court scenes gave me chills. Screenwriter Joseph Koskoff masterfully captures the intensity of each moment. As the film progresses, we see Marshall fight all of the frustration he feels towards the system. It is amazing to see how at a time of Jim Crow, Marshall was still willing to better a country that had disregarded him and his ancestors. The judge in this film is intimidated by his demeanor and decided that only attorneys licensed in Connecticut could approach the bench. This was a surprising twist that shows how the law silences people of color. This is where Josh Gad comes in as an unqualified insurance lawyer who references handwritten notes and relies on charisma. I enjoyed watching Josh Gad on screen as a clueless yet very intelligent person who is a small part of this moment in history.

 I am familiar with many other similar cases such as the one mentioned in Marshall. When I was watching this film, I began to think about the Scottsboro boys, a group of African American teens in Alabama accused of raping two women and charged as adults. I think this movie was created not only to highlight the legacy of Thurgood Marshall but also to remind us that the present mirrors the past in so many ways. Marshall had an extremely humble beginning which inspires young people to fight for what they believe in. I would definitely recommend this to others, this is far more than a few pages out of a history book put onto to film.

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Marshall: Chadwick Boseman stars as real life superhero Thurgood Marshall