Thurgood

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  • Series Premiere Date: Feb 24, 2011
Thurgood Image
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: George Stevens, Jr.'s one-man play with Laurence Fishburne as the first African-American Supreme Court Justice, Thurgood Marshall, was filmed at the Kennedy Center's Eisenhower Theater for HBO.
  • Genre(s): Drama
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Reviewed by: Ginia Bellafante
    Feb 24, 2011
    100
    It is the seamless weaving of Marshall's personal biography with the story of his tenure as chief counsel for the N.A.A.C.P., where he worked to challenge the separate-but-equal doctrine used to justify racial segregation in the decision of Plessy v. Ferguson, that keeps Thurgood a work of such enthralling theater and television.
  2. Reviewed by: David Zurawik
    Feb 23, 2011
    90
    It's just plain good--fast-paced, emotionally engaging and even transporting at times. Much of the credit goes to Fishburne's performance, but there other important factors, like the way in which Stevens' script captures Marshall's liberating sense of humor, and the rich look of the overall production.
  3. Reviewed by: Keith Staskiewicz
    Feb 23, 2011
    83
    Fishburne's gravitas helps do the Supreme Court justice...justice.
  4. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Feb 23, 2011
    80
    Fishburne captures Marshall's larger-than-life qualities, and in his playwriting debut, Stevens endows his portrait with a ripe sense of humor.
  5. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Feb 24, 2011
    80
    While he can be matter-of-fact, bemused and self-deprecating, he never loses a sense of forcefulness, purpose and pride. As Fishburne obviously understands, the story requires no hand-waving or rhetorical embellishment.
  6. Reviewed by: Ellen Gray
    Feb 24, 2011
    70
    The play's conceit doesn't work particularly well on film and it doesn't help that the performance took place at the Kennedy Center's Eisenhower Theater before an unstudent-like audience. But as static as the staging sometimes feels, Fishburne is more animated than he's gotten to be in a while, delivering a performance that's as funny as it appears to be heartfelt.
  7. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Feb 23, 2011
    50
    It probably works better onstage, but Stevens should know that what you do to achieve suspension of disbelief in a theater is not what you do to convince an audience that what it is seeing in a film is real.

See all 9 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of
  2. Mixed: 0 out of
  3. Negative: 0 out of

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