Jackie is … wow, nothing like I expected.
Yes, I’m an Australian about to wax lyrical about a former US first lady and in truth that’s because of Natalie Portman. The entire movie rests on her shoulders, and she is absolutely amazing.
The movie begins during an interview she’s giving months after Kennedy has been assassinated, when her grief has made her angry, sharp-tongued with the reporter come to interview her. It’s a far cry from the woman we see who enters the White House, excited and nervous at the mantle she’s taken on, and then later directly after the assassination when she’s only just holding herself together. These are the three time frames of the movie that come together to create the picture of a woman who experienced so much and tried her best to love her husband (who BTW is barely in it. Everything in this movie is about Jackie, and not JFK).
There’s a scene in the movie that I can’t quite get over. It’s one directly after JFK is assassinated and the screen is filled with her, crying so hard as she wipes her husband’s blood off her face. Her make-up is gone, wiped away with her husband’s blood and she’s laid bare for the audience.
Another facet of the assassination is that no one knew what to do with her. Everyone around her was shocked, and they were all battling to make sense of what to do, but the image that sticks with me is that of Jackie, sitting in an airplane seat as still as a statue while all around her people were moving about, or talking about what had happened and going on with things… but for her, time stood still.
While reading about this movie, I found out that Jackie had been an editor at a publishing house, something I had no idea about. One of the good things about the publicity around this movie is that it’s focused on her instead of her in relation to JFK.
This is surprising and powerful movie about a woman history has shaped. Have you seen it?