Winnie Trailer: Jennifer Hudson Takes on a Mandela


As its title suggests, Winnie is a biopic of Winnie Mandela, the wife of Nelson Mandela, a key figure in the anti-apartheid struggle, and a controversial figure who at various points has been convicted of kidnapping, fraud, and theft. But Winnie, as played unembarrassingly by Jennifer Hudson, is the least interesting thing about this trailer. The most interesting is Terrence Howard, who seems totally miscast as Nelson Mandela, and who nonetheless, understandably, dominates the action. (Who should have played Mandela? And don't say Morgan Freeman.) Also interesting: The trailer's overall TV-movie vibe, exacerbated by clunky exposition, a horribly corny performance by Winnie's father, and, mind-bogglingly given the story, a general lack of tension. By the time Winnie takes center stage it's for a brief moment, and then we jump many years forward, and she's been aged and bulked up and is apologizing for actions the trailer has told us nothing about. If anyone's life could make for a riveting drama, it's Winnie Mandela's, so maybe there's still a good movie hiding in all this footage ... There has to be, right?