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A Journal for Jordan

I’m really disappointed with this. I saw an interview with Denzel Washington recently where he said he’s realised how ephemeral life is, and that he’s now just concerned with spending what time he has left on doing the things that matter to him. So I was quite excited when I saw he’d directed this, and I thought great, he’s finally directed a film he’s not starring in. As much as I love Denzel as an actor, I was curious about what he’d do when he wasn’t also the star. 

The problem is, Michael B. Jordan was effectively just doing an impression of Denzel Washington. I don’t think that’s the fault of the actor necessarily, but it just made me think that this was a role that was written for Denzel that he was unfortunately too old for. It’s disappointing because it makes it seem like there’s no separation between his acting style and his directing style, and I really wanted to see a clear distinction from this. 

I found the film ponderous on the whole. I went into it not knowing much about the story or the concept, but it became very clear at the start that the the titular journal for Jordan was a book left behind, full of life advice from his dad. I was completely sold on that, and I couldn’t wait to hear more of what was in it. Then the film just showed me a dull, characterless romance of how his parents met instead. Multiple characters and events are mentioned and never shown, and nothing seems to have much purpose. I really hoped there’d be more to this.

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