Blind Spot 30: The Green Mile

When I was trying to think of movies to see for this year’s blind spot picks I remembered a conversation I had with a friend who was shocked I hadn’t seen the 1999 film The Green Mile. It just never appealed to me and came out at a time I wasn’t watching rated R movies. So, the blind spot series was the perfect spot to finally cover this well regarded flick. Unfortunately this is one of those classics that didn’t work for me. I can see why it would work for others but I didn’t care for it.

There is a trope in literature and film called the “magical negro”. This is defined as ” a supporting black stock character in American cinema who is portrayed as coming to the aid of a film’s white protagonists and who often possess mystical powers” Director Spike Lee went on to describe The Green Mile as the “super-duper magical negro” and I certainly agree with him.

The Green Mile is based on a novel by Stephen King and tells the story of a prison warden named Paul Edgecomb played by Tom Hanks who gets a new prisoner named John Coffey played by Michael Clark Duncan. John is on death row for the rape and murder of 2 little girls. He is joined by other prisoners played by Sam Rockwell, Michael Jeter and more.

However, John is no ordinary criminal. He has special powers that can heal and make things last forever (and the lights go out). Paul is even cured of a bladder infection and the wife of one of the prison wardens of a brain tumor.

The strength of The Green Mile definitely lies with its performances. Tom Hanks and Michael Clark Duncan are the particular standouts and Duncan was nominated for an Oscar for his work.

Unfortunately the movie can never shake the uncomfortable and trope-filled premise. I do not understand why they didn’t have the prison block more diverse. This would make it feel more like a person with powers instead of the magic black person sent to be a literal savior for the white people (and of course he doesn’t get saved by them at any time). It’s unfortunate.

Adding to all of this The Green Mile is over 3 hours long and very tedious to watch. Not a whole lot happens and the characters are very unpleasant. At about the 30 minute mark I was ready for this uncomfortable experience to be over. I am sure it is a film made with the best of intentions but it’s just not for me.

Current Mini Movie Reviews

Hi guys! I don’t always do full posts on every movie I’ve seen- especially when I am playing catch up. So, here are some mini- reviews of 2017 releases I’ve seen but not reviewed on the blog.

The Case for Christ- 

One of the better faith-based films I’ve seen. It just tells one man’s struggle with faith- Lee Strobel. The acting is good and the preaching is pretty subdued. It still is more for its target demo but it doesn’t pander to them or attack those who don’t believe. Even the moment of conversion is pretty subtle and moving. My religious friends will be inspired by it and enjoy it.

Overall Grade- B

Going in Style-

A group of senior citizens robbing a bank seems like an odd premise for a charming film but that’s what it turns out to be. It doesn’t dive into the deeper problems of this story and it can get sitcomy but the cast elevates it. It kind of reminded me of Fun with Dick and Jane- a movie I find very underrated.

Overall Grade- B

The Nut Job 2-

I’m as shocked as you guys are to say I enjoyed The Nut Job 2! While it isn’t going to win any academy awards it was a solid, charming animated film. It improves upon the original in pretty much every way which I admire. They took feedback and made something better. More than you can say for other franchises like Despicable Me…Anyway, the story is very played out and predictable and the villains are lame but I liked the characters much more. Plus, the animation was better and the characters much more likable. I think if people gave it a shot with an open mind they’d enjoy it as well.

For my youtube review click here

Overall Grade- B-


This film is set in the 90s about a family in Brooklyn and each member’s issues. Naturally I enjoyed the 90s throwbacks but what made it work was the great casting. This really felt like a believable family. The way they talked and behaved towards each other felt very authentic. The two sisters (Abby Quinn and Jenny Slate) even look like they could be sisters and they had great chemistry together.  The script is fairly pedestrian but I enjoyed it nonetheless.

Overall Grade- B+ (R Rated)

Dark Tower-

I haven’t been this frustrated in a fantasy film since Warcraft. At least with this film I had read the book so I had some idea what was going on but the film is so badly put together. The Gunslinger and Man in Black are supposed to be rivals and here it felt like random scenes that made no sense together.  It reminded me of Fan4stic to be honest. The ties to the Dark Tower and why The Man in Black wants to destroy it are nebulous at best. The kid is annoying and the violence means nothing because we don’t know any of the people being impacted.  The special effects look cheap and the whole thing really annoyed me. Maybe an F was harsh on my youtube review but I found it completely limp and boring. It felt like it would never end at just over 90 minutes! I liked it less than Transformers: the Last Knight, which at least has some visual spectacle. Matthew McConaughey gives a razzie worthy performance.

Overall Grade- F


A terrific performance from Sally Hawkins carries this biopic about an artist that has physical limitations and her unique marriage. The main problem is Ethan Hawke who plays her husband and his character seemed to swing radically from scene to scene . I never knew if I would get the kind man or the beast. Perhaps that was true to life but it felt random here. I still enjoyed it though. A solid biopic with a great lead performance.

Overall Grade- B

Jeremiah Tower: the Last Magnificent-

A documentary about a famous New York and San Francisco chef, Jeremiah Tower. This is a standard celebrity biographical documentary. It didn’t give me a ton of new insight into the culinary world but was interesting. There are a lot of celebrity interviews like Wolfgang Puck and Anthony Bourdain. It won’t blow your mind but it’s interesting enough.

Overall Grade- B- (Rated R)

If you’ve seen any of these please put in the comments section what you thought! Thanks!