While the life and legacy of John F. Kennedy has been extensively documented, the concerns and fears of his wife, Jacqueline, especially during the harrowing times following the assassination, have been less explored. Pablo Larrain‘s “Jackie” offers a corrective, but it’s a story that can’t be told without addressing the killing that changed her life, and an entire nation. And the director explains to Uproxx how he approached that moment in the Oscar contending drama.
“I remember when I got the script and then I got into the Warren Commission Report. The script was amazing and then the Warren Commission Report would describe how he was assassinated: like one bullet here and one bullet there, third bullet in the skull. And at the end was, ‘Jacqueline Kennedy, his 34-year-old wife, was sitting next to him.’ And we were like, why don’t we think for the length of this film that he was sitting next to her. And so that’s why our approach is only her perspective all the way in the film,” Larrain said. “And why would we go away from her in that specific moment, you know? And it was fair to the story and the point of view that we had that if we’re going to show the assassination, we’re going to show it from her perspective. And she was very close [to the assassination], man. So why would we go away from it? And yeah, we wait until the right moment shows up, because this is a movie about memory and memory is very random and it’s associated to emotions. And it felt better when we cut the film to put it there because that was the moment she would probably remember it strongly, you know? And we had to be close and graphic because we need to share that emotion so people will understand what she went through.”
However, the movie is also about myth making, something that this new featurette explores, while a clip finds Natalie Portman‘s Jackie in one of her many contentious moments with a reporter, played by Billy Crudup.
“Jackie” starts rolling out in limited release this weekend. Don’t miss it.