In 1947, Dalton Trumbo was Hollywood’s top screenwriter, until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs. (IMDb)
Nomination: Leading Actor (Bryan Cranston)
The Hollywood 10 and blacklisting is such an interesting part of American film history. It’s not a particularly bright spot, but it has always fascinated me. And Dalton Trumbo is a big part of that. Bryan Cranston does an excellent job portraying the famous screenwriter. But I will say, there is a reason that his performance is the only Oscar nomination. This is a good movie, don’t get me wrong, and the cast is impressive. Diane Lane was great as Cleo, I loved Alan Tudyk and Louis C.K. as other blacklisted writers, and John Goodman got to play a movie executive in a period piece again, so there’s that. I was pleasantly surprised by Elle Fanning’s performance. She played his daughter from 12 years old to mid 20s and I thought she did a really good job. That being said, for a movie about a screenwriter, the screenplay is decent. It’s not brilliant. You can tell when Cranston is saying actual Trumbo quotes, and when it’s just plain dialogue. There were some shots and camera angles that were just trying way too hard to be dramatic, and Cranston’s aging makeup was inconsistent. That being said, this is still a movie that is worth a watch.