Film Review – Jackie

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From Chilean director Pablo Larrain and a writer whose previous credits include the adaptations of YA novels The Maze Runner and the third film in the Divergent Series – Allegiant – which was such a disappointment that the next film in that series is releasing as a TV movie comes Natalie Portman as Jackie.

I wanted and expect to love Jackie.

Instead I found myself unconvinced by Natalie Portman’s role as the wife of JFK in the aftermath of his assassination in 1963.

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Portman is an excellent actress and I knew little about Jackie Kennedy except that she was very glamorous, and lost her husband under horrific circumstances.

After watching this film, I felt like I knew just as little and could not be drawn into Portman’s portrayal of a woman experiencing PST in the hours following the assassination, and her interview with a journalist shortly afterward.

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I adore watching inaccessible men in roles on screen, most notably out shortly, Casey Affleck is phenomenal as a family man coming to grips with loss in Manchester By The Sea, so perhaps it is a male thing, but I couldn’t get involved in this one.

I saw it in an LA cinema and there were scores of weeping women around me who clearly wept along for the ride, so best to judge this one for yourself.

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Portman is clearly comfortable playing real people having done so in films like where she played a 16th century Queen of England in The Other Boleyn Girl and more recently in A Tale of Love and Darkness, and she gives playing Jackie her all, but I could not connect with her.

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Portman has not appeared in a film in Australian cinemas since Thor The Dark Wold back in October 2013, with her subsequent three films as an actress not securing a theatrical release. This may well turn the tide for her as it is tipped for Awards season glory. I sense I am in the minority on this one in that it did not work for me.

2 Stars.

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