Shedding light on hidden heroes: Spotlight movie sparks reflection

%22Spotlight%22+tells+the+story+of+how+the+Boston+Globe+uncovered+the+scandal+of+child+molestation+and+cover-up+within+the+local+Catholic+Archdiocese.+%28Kerry+Hayes%2FOpen+Road+Films%29

“Spotlight” tells the story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese. (Kerry Hayes/Open Road Films)

Sammie Seamon, Staff Writer

“Spotlight” tells the story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese. (Kerry Hayes/Open Road Films)

The controversial, gritty, down-to-earth movie, Spotlight directed by Tom McCarthy was released on November 6th. It feels wrong to simply call it a good movie– it was a jarring representation of a real scandal affecting real people. Spotlight is about a team of investigative reporters working for the Boston Globe who uncovered widespread sexual abuse within the Catholic Church.

Spotlight really detailed the actual investigation. I saw what each of the characters’ morals were and their own perspective on the case. Their journalistic efforts eventually uncovered a corruption in Catholic churches that the public was originally blind to, including one Catholic priest who molested 80 boys. This knowledge led to more investigations that grew astonishingly, especially for an area that is as small as one city.

The article that was eventually printed shocked the church and the Boston community that is primarily Catholic. Even the members of the Spotlight team grappled with this investigation, as most of them were lapsed Catholics.

As a journalism student, Spotlight broadened my perspective on the power and influence that the media holds over a community. News can influence people’s mindset either towards or against a group of people or an event. The Catholic Church covered up information and sources that would expose the scandal, which hindered the journalists and led them to unforeseen challenges in presenting the case to the public.

I loved how the movie made it feel almost like the audience was investigating the with the reporters. Spotlight took the audience behind the paper, and showed them the care and time the journalists took to thoroughly investigate every facet of the case.   

The Boston Globe has printed over 600 stories about the scandal and uncovered 246 individual priests that molested children. These stories provided some justice for the survivors who were abused as children, most around age 12. Spotlight is a beautifully told eye opener that demonstrates the opportunity reporters, or anyone in any field has to fix problems in a community.                                                       

Spotlight
Rated R
Running time: 2hr, 8min