Released in U.S. movie theaters on July 29, 2016, “Indignation” is a film not to be missed this summer. The film is very well done from start to finish. Taking place in the early 1950s, Marcus Messner (played by Logan Lerman) is going off to college while some of his friends are going off to fight in the Korean War. A Jew by upbringing, Messner experiences the differences in America on being Christian, Jewish, and an Atheist.
The focus of the film; however, is how one’s small decisions can dramatically affect one’s outcome in life. Sounding like something from a Tony Robbins’ seminar, a 2-millimeter difference can have massive impact, both positive and negative. This is a theme that is hammered throughout the beginning of the film. In Messner’s case, he chooses wrong causing dire consequences for himself and those around him.
But truly, “Indignation” is a love story. Messner is a strident individualist looking to find his direction in life when he falls for the lovely Olivia Hutton (Sarah Gadon). Hutton, while coming off as the perfect girl from the 1950s, she has a past far more complicated than Messner could imagine. It is a young love that Hutton never forgets, even as she grows old — her love for Messner never dies.
While Gadon and Lerman offer high-quality acting, Tracy Letts who plays Dean Cauldwell, is equally masterful. While Letts’ early work was comedy, he has proven himself to be an strong dramatic actor. We look forward to seeing more of him later this month in “Imperium” where he plays alongside Daniel Radcliffe.
“Indignation” is based on Philip Roth’s book which is largely a collection of his own experiences during the time period. This is a must-see film for 2016 and is one of the best, if not best of the year so far.