Fans of the Hidden Figures trailer will be pleased to learn that it’s been expanded into a feature length movie.
This is the story of three black women (Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe) who worked for NASA in the ’60s, and their previously unsung contribution to the space race. Theodore Melfi leaves no cliché unchecked in his two-hour celebration of their inspirational accomplishments.
If you’ve seen the trailer then you’ve seen the film, but there’s still plenty here to lift your spirits. Although it’s too long, overly Hollywoodified and none of it rings remotely true, Hidden Figures succeeds as a frothy helping of crowd-pleasing entertainment. Its lightness of touch and comedic dealings with racism are comparable to The Help, which also starred Octavia Spencer.
She and the other leads excel in likeable roles, with support from Kevin Costner as Kevin Costner and Jim Parsons as Sheldon. And fans of Scream Queens may be concerned that Chad Radwell (Glen Powell) has become an astronaut. God help us. Plus there’s a nice mixture of period and contemporary music, from the great Miles Davis to the ubiquitous Pharrell Williams.
For a film about individuals who skyrocketed through various glass ceilings, Hidden Figures makes no such leaps forward. But it’s easy to enjoy the company of these intelligent, witty and confident characters. Simply put, this is good fun. It’s not rocket science. Hang on. Yes it is.