In his fourth directorial effort, Denzel Washington has tackled the true and tragic story of First Sergeant Charles Monroe King, who died while serving his country in Iraq. A Journal For Jordan was adapted from the New York Times Bestseller of the same name, written by King’s widow Dana Canedy, and stars Michael B. Jordan as the war hero, who kept a journal while serving in the Iraq War to give his newborn son.
As heart-breaking as the true story is, the movie A Journal For Jordan appears to focus on the love story this family shared — the trailer already had us reaching for the tissues — so let’s take a look at what the critics had to say
Starting with the CinemaBlend review, Sarah El-Mahmoud gave A Journal For Jordan 3 out of 5 stars, saying the two-and-a-half-hour movie could have benefited from a little editing. The movie definitely takes advantage of Michael B. Jordan’s former Sexiest Man Alive title, and leans on the charm of Jordan and Chanté Adams, who plays Dana. A lot of time was spent on Dana and Charles’ early romance, but the film was strongest when it focused on their son Jordan. The importance of Dana’s perspective, however, becomes apparent in the third act.
Robert Kojder of Flickering Myth, who rated the film 2 stars, agreed that Jordan (the fatherless teen son played by Jalon Christian) was underutilized and that the film relies heavily — perhaps too heavily — on the wish fulfillment of making Charles Monroe King the perfect boyfriend.
Kate Erbland of IndieWire graded the movie a C-, saying that for a story that was supposed to be about a father’s journal to his son, it so desperately wanted to be something else. And while Michael B. Jordan and Chanté Adams are great actors, their chemistry didn’t come across on-screen strong enough to hold the movie.
Roger Moore of Movie Nation gave A Journal For Jordan 2 stars out of 4. And while Moore found the same faults as the above critics, he applauded the emotional ending, lamenting that the movie should have had more of those moments and saying it might fool viewers into thinking the film was better than it was.
A Journal For Jordan was written by Virgil Williams and is set to hit theaters on Christmas Day. Be sure to also take a look at our 2022 Movie Release Schedule to start planning your outings for next year.
Mom of two and hard-core '90s kid. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Can usually be found rewatching The West Wing instead of doing anything productive.
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