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That is not my son!
Changeling
Review by Ross Anthony

This is a great looking period film. Beautiful cinematography -- and I love the 1920's cars. Even at just over two hours it's edited rather well and keeps moving. That said, I'd have cut some of the "mental institution" sequences -- they really started to drive me nuts (no doubt, their point exactly). Which reminds me, if you like seeing Jolie institutionalized, check out Girl, Interrupted -- good film.

Changeling opens with this caption "A True Story." That stuck out to me, didn't say "Inspired by" or "Based on" … simply "A True Story." I don't know what that means, only that, had they not made mention, I'm sure I'd be yelling at the screen: "That's redicious" or "That'd never happened that way" or "I'm not buying it." My true story is that I thought those things despite the caption.

Good performances by all involved -- not just Jolie. Strong direction too. Still, the main character's frustrations are communicated all too well to the viewer; so if you like to be annoyed, you'll love the first half of the film. From being to end, filmmakers takes drama right up to the edge of melodrama, but still maintain integrity -- until the very last line of the film. Unfortunately, that false, misfitting, last line of dialogue uttered by Jolie's character belies the story's tone with an uninspired attempt to end on a greeting card upswing. It casts away much well-earned cinematic respect in a whispered moment.

Books by Author/Illustrator Ross Anthony


  • Changeling. Copyright © 2008.
  • Starring: Angelina Jolie, John Malkovich, Jeffrey Donovan, Colm Feore, Amy Ryan, Michael Kelly. Directed by Clint Eastwood. Screenplay by J. Michael Straczynski. Producer: Clint Eastwood, Brian Grazer, Ron Howard, Robert Lorenz at Universal Pictures.

Grade..........................B (2/4)


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Copyright © 1998-2016 Ross Anthony, Author - Speaker - Solo World Circumnavigator In addition to reviewing films and interviewing celebs at HollywoodReportCard.com, traveling the world, composing great music, motivational speaking, Mr. Anthony also runs his own publishing company in the Los Angeles area. While traversing the circumference of the planet writing books and shooting documentaries, Mr. Anthony has taught, presented for, worked &/or played with locals in over 30 countries & 100 cities (Nairobi to Nagasaki). He's bungee-jumped from a bridge near Victoria Falls, wrestled with lions in Zimbabwe, crashed a Vespa off a high mountain road in Taiwan, and ridden a dirt bike across the States (Washington State to Washington DC). To get signed books ("Rodney Appleseed" to "Jinshirou") or schedule Ross to speak check out: www.RossAnthony.com or call 1-800-767-7186. Check out his other sites too: Author*Illustrator*Speaker, Motobookothon 2009, M9, Write Triangle, TwT. Go into the world and inspire the people you meet with your love, kindness, and whatever it is you're really good at. Check out books by Ross Anthony. Rand() functions, Pho chicken soup, rollerblading, and frozen yogurt (w/ blueberries) also rock! (Btw, rand is short for random. It can also stand for "Really Awkward Nutty Dinosaurs" -- which is quite rand, isn't it?) Being alive is the miracle. Special thanks to Ken Kocanda, HAL, Jodie Keszek, Don Haderlein, Mom and Pops, my family, R. Foss, and many others by Ross Anthony. Galati-FE also deserves a shout out. And thanks to all of you for your interest and optimism. Enjoy great films, read stirring novels, grow.


Last Modified: Wednesday, 03-Dec-2008 12:23:52 PST