Billy Bob Thornton
Parkland is set during that day and the three following it. Over the course, we meet a number of characters, both famous and not, involved in the chaos: Abraham Zapruder (Paul Giamatti), who recorded the assassination; doctors Charles James Carrico (Zac Efron) and Malcolm O. Perry (Colin Hanks), who tended to the wounds; FBI agent James P. Hosty (Ron Livingston), who investigated the case; Secret Service agents Forrest Sorrels (Billy Bob Thornton) and Roy Kellerman (Tom Welling), who were both in the motorcade; Father Oscar Hubert (Jackie Earle Haley), who gave JFK his last rites; and a 24-year-old man by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald (Jeremy Strong)
Writer/director Peter Landesman’s feature debut takes viewers to the emergency room at Parkland Memorial Hospital, FBI headquarters and more in an attempt to recreate the days that the filmmakers and documentarians who are so focused on conspiracies rarely touch on.
It’s hard not to appreciate that Landesman is taking a different approach and going to uncomfortable places (such as the operating room where Carrico so desperately tried to save JFK’s life) in order to shed light. But while he tries to capture the chaos, Parkland ends up being a muddled and overcrowded mess. There is simply too much there to cover in just over 80 minutes.
There could be several dozen narratives constructed from the JFK assassination: one on Zapruder’s life, another on the hospital staff that day, another on Lyndon B. Johnson and Jackie Kennedy aboard Air Force One, and on and on. But just one? The good intentions are there, but it seems so futile in the end. It may stretch over three hours, but at least Oliver Stone’s JFK had focus.
Deleted Scenes (6:29): There are six brief scenes here, which can be viewed separately or as a whole. They are: “Hosty Lee 1,” “Hosty Lee 2,” “Nurse Nelson,” “Pull Over Funeral,” “Residents,” and “Zap.”