Eastwood Must Swap Changeling’s Weak Ending

Changeling

CHANGELING

Directed By: Clint Eastwood

Starring: Angelina Jolie, John Malkovich

Based on real events, Clint Eastwood’s “Changeling” is an insane story of injustice and corruption in 1920s Los Angeles. It centers around single mother Christine Collins (Angelina Jolie), whose son goes missing one afternoon. Months later, the LAPD finds a kid that fits the description and insists that he’s her son despite the mother’s objections. Not only is the boy three inches shorter, but he’s also circumsized. As Christine gets more defiant, police captain J. J. Jones (Jeffrey Donovan) grows irritated and throws the poor woman in the nuthouse.

The incredible plot will leave you simultaneously shocked and in disbelief, given the fact that all of this actually happened. It doesn’t get much juicier than this. What’s more, the performances are solid all around. Jolie holds her own as the bereaved mother, and John Malkovich skillfully plays an indignant preacher with a personal vendetta against the LAPD. “Changeling” even carries a weighty critique of the mistreatment of independent women in the early 20th century.

Yet, the film is by no means perfect. For starters, the dialogue is sometimes redundant (I lost count of the number of times Christine angrily shouts “He’s not my son! I want my son!” by the end of the first half) and it runs about 40 minutes too long. In fact, the movie would have been significantly better had the screenwriter simply axed the entire third act. “Changeling” could have been Eastwood’s directorial masterpiece, but unfortunately it falls a little short toward the end. It’s still well-worth seeing because on the whole it’s highly entertaining and its flaws are fairly forgivable.

Rating: 66/100

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2 Responses to “Eastwood Must Swap Changeling’s Weak Ending”

  1. KELLY Says:

    Hey,
    Just curious if you have any screening info on the films you review. Are they coming to Busan? As if a film fan, I have been a bit thirsty here in Busan. Thanks for the great resource. Keep up the good work!

  2. jacobworrel Says:

    Thanks man. ‘Changeling’ should be playing in most major movie theatres in Busan – like Lotte Cinema, Megabox, Primus…
    I saw it at the Lotte Cinema in Seomyeon. For the times, I asked a Korean friend of mine. I have yet to find a website in English with movie times, but if I do I’ll post it.

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