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Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

I finally got to check a movie off my long list with the viewing of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil.

It’s the 1997 movie directed by Clint Eastwood that is based on the true story of Jim Williams, a wealthy art collector in Savannah, Georgia who killed his gay lover. The movie starts with John Cusack’s character, John Kelso, going to Savannah as a reporter with Town and Country magazine. His assignment is to simply cover the annual Christmas party hosted by Jim Williams, played by Kevin Spacey. Kelso’s assignment takes a drastic turn when Williams’ gay lover Billy, played by Jude Law, is shot dead by Williams. Kelso decides to stay and cover the murder trial. I won’t reveal the verdict!

The movie was entirely too long but that’s my only complaint. It was very well done. The characters were very entertaining because Savannah has some odd-balls. Some of the best ones were an outspoken drag queen (who is the real person playing herself), a crazy local who tied horseflies to his collar, and a voodoo witch. The atmosphere, characters and the film’s set allowed for great mise en scene. The film was rich with great visuals, whether it was in the Bonaventure Cemetery or the inside of Williams’ massive estate.

The film’s director Clint Eastwood kind of speaks for itself, but he is AMAZING. He’s been directing since the 1970s and already had 20 films under his belt before this one. Definitely a good watch, but allow plenty of time for the 2.58 hour movie.



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