Chappaquiddick is a story that the media buried for years. Reporters avoided it or made excuses for it. No one in Hollywood wanted to tell it in a film. That is until director John Curran brought it to life.
Senator Ted Kennedy (Jason Clarke) is gearing for a presidential run in the upcoming years. He lives in the shadow of his decased brothers JFK and RFK, but he feels like it is time to break out. He and his cousin Joe Gargan (Ed Helms) return to Chappaquiddick Island to participate in a local boating race. Teddy also wants to recruit RFK’s “boiler room” girls for his upcoming Senate race and later presidential run. He interacts with Mary Jo Kopechne (Kate Mara), a fateful meeting.
During a party on Martha’s Vineyard, Teddy goes for a drive with Mary Jo, but after he loses control of his car, he crashes on Dike Bridge, plunging the car in to a pond. Does he do the right? No, he leaves her to drown. When he finds Joe, his only response when asked what happened was, “I’m not going to be president.” Though he is encouraged to report the accident, he tries to establish an alibi and has to deal with this fatal decision. What follows is a web of lies, a power play, and a fake redemption story.
Director John Curran does not try to sell you with conspiracy theories nor does he try to white-wash Teddy Kennedy. While some of the sequences of events are dramatized, he simply shows what happened on that fateful night. From this, he creates a narrative that is compelling and fascinating to watch.
I want to applaud the cast. Ed Helms, Jim Gaffigan, Clancy Brown, and Kate Mara all deliver dynamite performances in this film. I especially want to highlight Jason Clarke. He played the Democrat ‘Lion of the Senate’ with every ounce of Messiah Complex and delusions of grandeur that is known with the Kennedy name.
This is how biopics and historical films need to be made. It is suspenseful, somber, but most importantly it is respectly to the victim, whose name is all but forgotten by a Democrat Party and a Left-wing media that canonized a man who let a poor woman die when he could have saved her.
FAVORITE QUOTE: You’ll never be great.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Foul language, Violence, Mild thematic elements
Check out the trailer below:
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That is my review. What did you think? Let me know in the comments below and tell me if there’s a movie you’d like me to review. Check out my thoughts on the film Hostiles. Don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe for more posts like this one.