“THE PUB­LIC”

The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - On Tv -

Emilio Estevez han­dles many of the ma­jor jobs on this in­tense drama, serv­ing as writer and di­rec­tor as well as a pro­ducer and star of this tale of a cri­sis that evolves into a big­ger one when a group of home­less peo­ple re­fuses to leave the Cincin­nati Pub­lic Li­brary dur­ing a se­vere cold snap. The pres­ence of riot po­lice – with Alec Bald­win play­ing a ne­go­tia­tor – prompts the es­ca­la­tion of the sit­u­a­tion from a non­vi­o­lent mat­ter to some­thing po­ten­tially more tragic, some­thing that two li­brar­i­ans caught in the mid­dle (Estevez, Jena Malone) hope to avoid. Chris­tian Slater, Tay­lor Schilling (“Or­ange Is the New Black”), Gabrielle Union, Richard T. Jones and “Board­walk Em­pire” alums Jef­frey Wright and Michael Ken­neth Wil­liams also star. ★★★ (PG-13: AS, N, P, V) (Also on Blu­ray and On De­mand)

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