Spotlight (2015)

In 2001, Spotlight—a four-person investigative team for the Boston Globe—is looking for the next big story. When a case about a priest who molested 80 kids in the mid-70s is brought to the table, the new executive editor of The Globe, Marty Baron (Liev Schrieber), wants to cover the story, taking on the Archdiocese of Boston and the  Roman Catholic Church. The team looks into whether Boston’s Cardinal Law (Len Cariou) knew about the priest’s crimes. They soon find that more than one priest has been protected by the Church to hide how they preyed on vulnerable children. It’s an explosive story, especially in a city like Boston, where 53% of the subscribers to the Globe are Catholic.

The story becomes a huge undertaking for the press, but a worthy one since the victims of the priests had been ignored, and the Church’s immense power was rarely challenged. Each reporter interviews victims and reluctant lawyers, finding buried information the paper slept on years ago and the horrific impact on the victims as adults. While they’re met with resistance and the insidious corruption that infiltrated Boston, the Spotlight team refused to be swayed, driven by doing what’s right.

Spotlight covers the true story of how the Globe’s investigative journalism team dug deep and persisted in bringing to light the huge coverup by the Boston Archdiocese and the subsequent resignation of Cardinal Law. The series of articles won the Globe the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. Directed by Tom McCarthy, the film stars Michael Keaton, Stanley Tucci, Mark Ruffalo and Canadian Rachel McAdams. With a huge presence within the awards season in 2016, the film won Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay. MacAdams was nominated for Best-Supporting Actress that year.

Review by Carolyn Mauricette


Rachel MacAdams

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Canadian connection

Starring Rachel MacAdams
Partially shot in Toronto, Ontario
Spotlight was filmed in Boston and many locations in Toronto, including the Globe and Mail newspaper offices.