News 01.17.20

9 Powerful Reactions to Movie ‘Just Mercy,’ Starring Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx

By Daniele Selby

Courtesy of Represent Justice.

Just Mercy, released in theaters across the US on January 10, tells the story of Bryan Stevenson, then a young lawyer, and his incredible effort to save the life of Walter McMillian, who was sentenced to death for a murder he did not commit.

The powerful film, which stars Michael B. Jordan as Stevenson and Jamie Foxx as McMillian, has only been in theaters nationwide for about a week, but has already left an indelible mark on viewers. 

It’s estimated that 4% of people on death row are wrongfully convicted — like McMillian — this means that at least 100 people are at risk of losing their lives for a crime they did not commit. And those who have seen the film have been shocked and outraged to learn of such injustice.

Just Mercy, which takes its name from Stevenson’s book of the same title, shows the grueling uphill battle Stevenson and McMillian faced in pursuit of justice. The film also follows the creation of the Equal Justice Initiative, the organization Stevenson founded to challenge racial injustice in the legal system and advocate against mass incarceration and the use of excessive punishment, including the death penalty.

Related: Innocence Project’s 2019 Wrongful Conviction Reading Guide

Celebrities like rapper and activist Common and Kim Kardashian — who have both been vocal advocates of criminal justice reform — were so moved by the film, they bought out theaters to give people the opportunity to see it for free, and urged people to support the movie.

And many people who have seen Just Mercy have applauded the film and what it stands for on social media, and have called for action. These are just some of the thoughtful reactions that reflect the film’s impact.

 

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  1. Brandi Hayden says:

    I have lived close to 8 decades and I’ve seen what has happened over my present lifetime. It was brilliant of Anthony Anderson to put “Black Panther” and “Just Mercy” however I believe he missed a bet to complete the “if I can see it, I can be it” message of Black Panther” and the “this is what is really going on” message of “Just Mercy”. One is positive fantasy and the other is extremely negative reality. The one not covered is how often we dream and achieve extraordinary heights in the real world only to have it snatched from our hands and “others” given credit for what we created, That it shown, up front and in your face, in the film “Hidden Figures”. That film should be added to that collection. If you haven’t seen it, you should watch. I want to be useful and I can still do that however even though job search is not supposed to discriminate against age or handicap, they do. I have skills and want to use them to support the Innocence Project. I’m a legal transcriber and can I do that remotely. I have all of the professional equipment in my home office, phone, all-in-one laser jet color printer, a laser jet black and white printer, a fax machine, laptops, both mac and pc, and , as shown in my past experience profile, I have worked for law firms, attorneys, and law departments. I am a freelancer, benefits do not have to be offered since I am officially “retired” so a 1099 is fine. I will work until they bury me because doing so gives me joy and, mostly, I want my skills to be put to something useful and meaningful. I ask you to respond, pro or con, so that I may know how I stand. The bottom line is I really want to work for the Innocence Project to help with the mountain of paperwork I know that all law firms have. The name of my email address is really exactly how I work.

  2. David Garlock says:

    I am @davidleegarlock. I am a client of Bryan Stevenson and have a small role in the movie. He has four of his clients play the roles of incarcerated individuals since we had that experience. Not everyone would have that thought and conviction. He is all about Changing the Narrative and Being Proximate

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