Trumbo is a pretty epic story that highlights one man’s struggle against the system and it’s a real underdog story. Of course this was not just one man’s struggle as this was a countries struggle against fear and intolerance. It’s a historical fact and one a lot of people choose to ignore but at one point in history communism was popular, for the right reasons, but this was before men took it and twisted it to make their own empires. Even in the United States of America, the Communists once held a strong grasp but if history had of been slightly different maybe they would have rose to prominence but things didn’t turn out that way. The film begins reminding us of this fact and then moves on to discuss about the labor strikes in Hollywood and how several major stars actually and correctly sided with the strikes, a fact that shocked many at the time. It’s easy to look at communism and think things like Stalin was a total dick or Mao was kind of a mad man but at the same time you really need to look at what communism really is:
In political and social sciences, communism (from Latin communis, “common, universal”) is a social, political, and economic ideology and movement whose ultimate goal is the establishment of the communist society, which is a socioeconomic order structured upon the common ownership of the means of production and the absence of social classes, money and the state.
Many early members of this movement wanted to create a wold where there was no rich or poor only equality. I may not be a Communist but even I think that that is an admiral goal.
Sadly the red scare happened and the Communists where demonized, I won’t lie as some people where spies for Russia but many people where just idealists who where caught up in a war they didn’t want. Trumbo deals with the ironic concept that some men who just wanted everyone to be equal where forced to betray their freedom, freedom guaranteed to them by the constitution that they and their opponents guaranteed them. This sets the epic battle of David and Goliath.
Bryan Cranston once again astounds us. he brings so much whit, charm, confidence, vulnerability and honesty to this role that you forget that he isn’t actually Trumbo. He is just amazing the whole way through this picture and makes you route for him even when he disappoints you as a character. Though Cranston was amazing there where some other brilliant performances including Louis C.K. as Arlen Hird. Hird was a composite character and the fact that C.K. brought him to life among all these giants was truly amazing and must have been very difficult. Helen Mirren as Hedda Hopper, Mirren truly shines in this role as a women you love to hate, you can tell she is really having fun with this role. The always brilliant Alan Tudyk as Ian McLellan Hunter, if he is in it then I am going to see it, Alan is someone who never gets enough praise and finally the two scene thieves for this picture are the handsome and charming Dean O’Gorman as Kirk Douglas and the larger than life John Goodman as Frank King, who both provided some of the best scenes in the film.
This is a great film that reminds us that every fight is worth having even ones that cost us a lot and finally sometimes you gotta fight dirty to win, but try not to make to many enemies along the way. Trumbo is the story that everyone needs to know and it’s a tale that hopefully we all take to heart to avoid making the same mistakes again in history.