- The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The real-life cinematic story of a group of hard-nosed investigative reporters exposing shameful sexual abuse covered up at the Boston Archdiocese moves to home theaters in Spotlight (Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Rated R, $35.99, 129 minutes).

And, just in time to celebrate its Academy Award win for best picture.

Director and co-writer Tom McCarthy highlights the Boston Globe’s Pulitzer Prize-winning team Spotlight in the biographical drama as they methodically unraveled a conspiracy that protected priests molesting young boys back in the early 2000s.

Fantastic performances across the board feature Liev Schreiber as editor Marty Baron, Michael Keaton as Spotlight editor Walter “Robby” Robinson, John Slattery as editor Ben Bradlee Jr. and Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams and Brian d’Arcy James as Spotlight reporters Michael Rezendes, Sacha Pfeiffer and Matt Carroll, respectively.

The ensemble cast reminded viewers what it was like to deliver stories that mattered, especially when compared to the current, sorry state of budget-cutting journalism happening in newsrooms across the country.

For a film that rivals “All the President’s Men” for its attention to detail, the questioning of authority and excellence in highlighting old school reporting, the extras are, unfortunately, minimal.

Of the three featurettes, totaling roughly a paltry 12 minutes, the best gets all the original reporters and editors back together for a way-too-quick roundtable discussion.

The entire group reminisces — Mr. Baron, Mr. Robinson, Mr. Bradlee Jr., Mr. Rezendes, Miss Pfeiffer and Mr. Carroll — for only 6 minutes. I could have watched these unassuming heroes talk for hours about the process of breaking this enormous investigative series that featured over 600 stories during its evolution.

Normally, “Spotlight” would be a rental for the extras faux pas, but the depth of the film and its Oscar recognition makes it worthy of repeated viewings and part of a Blu-ray library.

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