A Mighty Heart

Michael Winterbottom

For what Variety called his first studio film, director Michael Winterbottom (24 Hour Party People) tackled the true and heart-wrenching story of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl’s kidnapping and eventual murder that took place in the winter of 2002. Based on the book written by Mariane Pearl and adapted by Band of Brothers screenwriter John Orloff, A Mighty Heart is a devastating and tense docudrama cinematically similar to The Constant Gardener that features a dynamic yet subtle performance by Angelina Jolie as Mariane who, very pregnant, kisses her husband goodbye as he steps into a cab, never to see him again. Officials, government specialists and colleagues and others wait alongside Mariane while trying to follow Daniel’s final story in Karachi, Pakistan that led to his disappearance and shocking end that horrified citizens around the globe. Editor Peter Christelis and Danish cinematographer Marcel Zyskind heighten the already tangible tension as we hold our breaths—and although we know what’s coming, it’s all the more upsetting when we are placed by Winterbottom in the house of his soon to be widow. A finely crafted film that features Jolie’s best work since her Academy Award winning turn in Girl, Interrupted.