Some single word titled films have become iconic. You know, like Jaws. Jaws is so famous world wide, you would never expect to see a newer filmed called Jaws about a completely different topic.
Seems like a bold choice. They will now forever be compared to a Stephen King movie, regardless of content. They have made googling harder. All over a name, which there is no law that says a movie has to be the main characters first name. But hey, I don’t make the big PR money.
I make the sitting alone at a table writing money.
Christine Chubbuck (Rebecca Hall) (They should have named this film Chubbuck) is a woman in her late 20’s working for a news station in Sarasota, Florida. It is also set in the mid-1970’s. Christine has a segment about the community, problems they face, or good things that happen. People seem to enjoy it. But nice stuff doesn’t bring in the ratings.
So station manager (Tracy Letts) continues to encourage the team to get the more gritty stuff. After all, if it bleeds, it leads. Christine has a crush on George (Michael C. Hall), their lead anchor. And Christine is terrible at relationships. She lives alone, never has a long term love interest, and hangs out with her mom (J. Smith-Cameron) a lot of the time. And the other amounts of time, she hangs out by herself. She has one decent friend, Jean (Maria Dizzia), a camera woman, but that is it.
And then, the owner of the news show finds himself in town. Apparently he is scouting local talent. Apparently he is going to get a news station in Baltimore, a much bigger market, and he is looking for people to take. This puts Christine on her edge, trying to make her segments better, including succumbing to listening all night to police radio feeds.
Eventually? All of the pressures, stress, and unfair practices end up just getting to be too much. Based on a true story. And also starring Kim Shaw as a sports anchor.
Clearly the biggest issue is that no realizes that sex sells more than violence.
Honestly, most of Christine is forgettable. It is really just about one woman, going through hard times in her life, socially and at the work place, and trying to cope with it all. Alone mostly. Through depression, without medical help. Oh, and she does have a medical issue to, that limits her potential for children in the future. That news didn’t help either.
For those that don’t know how this story ends, ignore this paragraph. But this is a true story because it is about the real Christine, who in the 1970’s, attempted to end her life on live television. And so it should be obvious where the conclusion leads up to. This isn’t really a spoiler, because it is only about her for that one famous reason. And because of that knowledge, most of the film I just found myself waiting for the conclusion that we were all expecting.
Rebecca Hall gives a great performance. It isn’t over the top, but it is passionate. Everyone else doesn’t matter in this flick, so none of them really stand out at all.
This is not a film for an amazing story. It is just a character study, and it shines with a single performance, but the rest feels rather drab.