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Clemency

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Videos & Photos

  • Official Trailer

Movie Info & Cast

Synopsis

How do you salvage your marriage when you are struggling to salvage your soul, your sense of self, and your sense of right and wrong? Bernadine Williams (Alfre Woodard) is a prison warden who, over the years, has been drifting away from her husband while dutifully carrying out executions in a maximum security prison. When she strikes up a unique bond with death-row inmate Anthony Woods (Aldis Hodge), a layer of emotional skin is peeled back, forcing Bernadine to confront the complex—and often contradictory—relationship between good intentions, unrequited desires, and what it means to be sanctioned to kill. Clemency is an absorbing and penetrating character study that pulls into deep focus the various ways in which people facing impossible ethical circumstances strive to achieve some state of grace. Director Chinonye Chukwu crafts a dense, emotional film through masterful restraint and precision, drawing forth radiant performances that illuminate the internal grapplings of people searching for redemption and self-recognition. A rare, sensitive, and deeply observant prison drama, Clemency offers a fresh and meaningful contribution to the genre.

Cast

  • Aldis Hodge
  • Alfre Woodard
  • Michael O'Neill
  • Wendell Pierce
  • Richard Schiff
  • LaMonica Garrett
  • Vernee Watson
  • Danielle Brooks
  • Dennis Haskins
  • Noshir Dalal

Did You Know?

Trivia

  • Michael O'Neill and Richard Schiff previously appeared together in 14 episodes of The West Wing and one episode of Roswell High.
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Verified Review
#horrible

This movie should have only been 30 minutes long and it could have been shown on TV during prime time. I was very disappointed.

LW
Lucy W

Metacritic

50
Dec 23, 2019

Clemency is a film that is just almost great. The level of restraint Chukwu has in her writing and execution, while admirable, is the very thing that prevents it from truly soaring.

Metacritic review by Candice Frederick
Candice Frederick
TheWrap
70
Feb 4, 2019

Clemency is a staggering achievement in its portrayal of a story that we often ignore out of simple spite or ignorance that humanizes all angles with compassion.

Metacritic review by Norman Gidney
Norman Gidney
Film Threat
80
Feb 1, 2019

It's the humanity and compassion invested across all the principal characters that makes this contemplative examination of the terrible weight of taking a life so commanding.

Metacritic review by David Rooney
David Rooney
The Hollywood Reporter