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Hidden Figures: A Review

Courtesy of IMDb

Courtesy of IMDb

Jordan Barton, Arts & Entertainment Editor

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Theodore Melfi’s Hidden Figures was intended to shed light on the black women of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) who helped lead America to put a man in outer space. The title is not an exaggeration–before I watched the movie I had no idea that three black women had played such a pivotal role in getting us to space.

Taraji Henson tackled the role of Katherine Johnson with poise, clearly identifying with her daily struggles as a black woman in a room full of the supposedly most intelligent white men America has to offer. In the movie, Johnson was forced to run a mile back and forth to the only women’s colored bathroom on campus. Each time I saw her brain move faster than the speed of light, I felt a sense of warmth in my heart; the woman was brilliant.

The movie included an enjoyable romantic twist in which the widowed Johnson found new love after her persistent admirer, Jim Johnson (Mahershala Ali), made his way into her life by treating both her and her three daughters like royalty. I, like many other viewers, appreciated this pleasant relief from the hard times the women faced at NASA.

Seeing Dorothy Vaughan, played by Octavia Spencer, was incredibly empowering. After being put down time and time again by her peers, she finally prevailed, showing the power of hard work, perseverance, and a little bit of style.

Mary Jackson, played by the talented Janelle Monae, starred in the opening scene which portrayed the social dynamic of the workplace. Although I didn’t get a lot of her character simply because I was focused on Johnson and Vaughan’s conflicts, I appreciated her attitude and comedic relief, which was an excellent addition to the movie as a whole.

Overall, I would definitely recommend seeing this movie if you want to experience a new twist on Black history. Seeing new faces outside of Tyler Perry’s traditional cast was definitely refreshing.

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Eleanor Roosevelt High School's Student-Run Newspaper
Hidden Figures: A Review