The Fugitive (1993) — PICK

Harriet (2019) — PICK


New on home video, Kasi Lemmons’ Harriet is a superhero origin story for three demographics underserved by mainstream Hollywood fare: women, people of color and people of faith.

Cynthia Erivo received a “Lead Actress” Oscar nomination as Harriet Tubman, from her enslavement in Maryland to her work as “Moses,” a legendary conductor on the Underground Railroad.

Her skull fractured in her youth by a white overseer, Harriet suffers seizures accompanied by divine visions and premonitions of danger.

Her initial escape, involving pursuers with hounds and a tense moment on a bridge over a churning river, reminded me of Andrew Davis’ masterful The Fugitive — which, coincidentally, is new on Hulu.

Harrison Ford exudes decency in the role of the innocent man wrongly accused, regularly going out of his way to help people in need, even risking capture or death.

Tommy Lee Jones won a “Supporting Actor” Oscar as the hard-boiled lawman whose initial concern is simply to recapture a fugitive but whose canny instincts gradually lead him to put the pieces together.

 

CAVEAT SPECTATOR: The Fugitive: Depiction of murder and other violence; some coarse language. Teens and up. Harriet: Brief but brutal, sometimes deadly, violence; racial epithets, some crude language and coarse references, and a profanity. Teens and up.