Hollywood star Tom Hanks is all set to appear in News of the World that is releasing in Netflix. It was initially expected to release at the theatres, however, due to the COVID 19 restrictions, new protocols had to be maintained.
The story is set in 1870's America, at a time when neighbours and families and communities were in stark and often violent conflict with each other, and Americans needed to decide who they were as Americans. Originally based on the book of Paulette Jiles, it was first published in 2016 and went on to become a best seller. A tale is a morally complexed evocation of Texas in the chaotic post-Civil War era.
The main characters include Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd, a scarred Civil War veteran who fought on the side of the Confederacy, searching for forgiveness and redemption. He has taken up work as a newsreader, a non-fiction storyteller who travels around the small communities of Texas, sharing tales of events from the far reaches of Europe and Asia, plus national and regional news, to audiences willing to pay him some small sum for the privilege. His work is isolated and itinerant, and yet, through his work, he is joining these divided towns to each other, one story at a time.
The film is about the search for belonging and a search for a home. When Kidd meets 10-year-old Johanna, the orphaned daughter of German immigrants who have lived among the Kiowa people for six years, she is being returned, against her will, to her biological aunt and uncle, whom she has never known.
Although they are separated by decades in age, life experience and language, both characters have suffered great losses and now find themselves homeless, both literally and figuratively. They represent the nation to which they belong, which, in the years after the Civil War, is struggling to find its way back to itself, too.
It reflects a time when North American citizens were grappling with a profound sense of loss and hoping to reconnect and be what the country was originally meant to be. Although, it is absolutely vital to keep in mind that homogeneity is a large population is not a possibility. News of the world reminds us that it isn't world leaders but common citizens who make the real difference take place. The healing of a country begins when we learn to live with each other through good and bad times.