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7.5/10
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228 user 373 critic

Selma (2014)

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A chronicle of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s campaign to secure equal voting rights via an epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, in 1965.

Director:

Ava DuVernay

Writer:

Paul Webb
Reviews
Popularity
2,490 ( 39)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 59 wins & 89 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Oyelowo ... Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Carmen Ejogo ... Coretta Scott King
Jim France ... Gunnar Jahn
Trinity Simone ... Girl #1
Mikeria Howard Mikeria Howard ... Girl #2
Jordan Rice ... Girl #3
Ebony Billups Ebony Billups ... Girl #4
Nadej K. Bailey ... Girl #5 (as Nadej Bailey)
Elijah Oliver Elijah Oliver ... Boy #1
Oprah Winfrey ... Annie Lee Cooper
Clay Chappell Clay Chappell ... Registrar
Tom Wilkinson ... President Lyndon B. Johnson
Giovanni Ribisi ... Lee White
Haviland Stillwell ... President's Secretary
André Holland ... Andrew Young
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Storyline

The unforgettable true story chronicles the tumultuous three-month period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery culminated in President Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the civil rights movement. Director Ava DuVernay's "Selma" tells the story of how the revered leader and visionary Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and his brothers and sisters in the movement prompted change that forever altered history. Written by Miss W J Mcdermott

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One dream can change the world. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for disturbing thematic material including violence, a suggestive moment, and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA | France

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 January 2015 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Selma: El poder de un sueño See more »

Filming Locations:

Marietta, Georgia, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$633,173, 2 January 2015, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$52,076,908

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$66,787,908
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Ava DuVernay and lead actor David Oyelowo's omissions from the 2015 Academy Award Nominations sparked an outcry from moviegoers and Hollywood insiders. Their omissions have been credited to the lack of racial diversity in Hollywood. In addition, the film was completed at the very end of November 2014, so Paramount was unable to manufacture and send "screeners" to members of the Academy in time for all of them to see it before the nomination period closed on January 8th, 2015. The absence of screeners also accounted for the film's lack of Screen Actors Guild nominations. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the first march, the marchers pass an auto parts store with a sign outside advertising "Shocks Struts (etc)". Very few cars used struts in 1965, and the few that did most likely would not have been available in Selma. See more »

Quotes

Martin Luther King Jr.: We will not wait any longer!
[church congregation applauds]
Martin Luther King Jr.: Give us the vote!
Jimmie Lee Jackson: [stands up and applauds] That's right - no more!
Martin Luther King Jr.: We're not asking - we're demanding! Give us the vote!
[church congregation resoundingly repeats and applauds]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Apart from the production companies involved, there are no opening credits. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Oscars (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Yesterday Was Hard On All of Us
Written by Fink (as Finian Greenall), Guy Whittaker & Tim Thornton
Performed by Fink
Courtesy of Ninja Tune
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
An intelligent, resonate and expertly crafted piece, if a little dry.
23 January 2015 | by Sergeant_TibbsSee all my reviews

Poor Selma. This Oscar season is quite unsatisfying without being able to see Selma live up to its full potential had a proper awards campaign taken place. While I expected it to still do well with the Academy, instead it makes an appearance similar to Pride at the Golden Globes. Sitting (almost) alone in the Picture category representing a minority. At least it seems it'll win Best Song. There's two aspects that sorely deserved a nomination, with all due respect to their peers. One is David Oyelowo's performance as Martin Luther King Jr., who nails his articulate speeches with an arresting passion. Sparks fly in his hands and you can't take your eyes off him. The second is Ava DuVernay's direction, whose delicacy, intelligence, and gravitas shine on screen. I marvel at how she wrote those original speeches yet still demonstrates a remarkable restraint. Selma takes itself deadly seriously, there's not a lick of humour to be found, and any break from documenting its events are often downbeat character moments.

There's a reason - the critics weren't kidding when they said that Selma feels like a mirror to society today with the violence and unrest. It's almost disturbing, but it resonates stronger than I ever expected. The film may be very dry, but every time it starts to lull it grabs you back, often in Oyelowo's hands. The most rousing moments of the film are when people are joining arms to do something together. Bradford Young's cinematography is the aspect that really holds it together. He relishes in the darkness, pushes objects to the edge of the frame, and holds so much tension in the air. At the very least, he makes this film such expertly crafted cinema. However, I would've liked to have seen King withstand a bit more damage. He may be courageous but it's difficult to have a truly compelling protagonist without taking some punches themselves. Perhaps Selma is too broad for its own good. It may not incite a fire in me like the filmmakers have, but I certainly admire the filmmaking. Lots of bright futures in this cast and crew.

8/10


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