The Public

Genre:  Drama
Running Time:  122 min.
Release Date: April 26, 2019 - Toronto
DVD: July 2, 2019
Blu-ray: July 2, 2019

Current rating: Rating: 4.50
based on 24 votes and 6 reviews
Rate Movie | Read all user reviews

Cast: Alec Baldwin, Emilio Estevez, Jena Malone, Taylor Schilling, Christian Slater, Che Rhymefest Smith, Gabrielle Union, Jacob Vargas, Michael K. Williams, Jeffrey Wright


An unusually bitter Arctic blast makes its way to downtown Cincinnati and the front doors of the public library. Many of the library patrons are homeless, mentally ill and marginalized, and the exhausted and overwhelmed staff of librarians often act as "de-facto social workers" and care for those regular patrons.

At odds with library officials over how to handle the extreme weather event, the patrons turn the building into a homeless shelter for the night by staging an "Occupy" sit in. What begins as an act of civil disobedience becomes a stand-off with police and a rush-to-judgment media constantly speculating about what's really happening inside the building.

Director: Emilio Estevez
Studio: Mongrel Media
Producer(s): Lisa Niedenthal, Emilio Estevez, Alex Lebovici, Steve Ponce
Screenplay: Emilio Estevez
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  • 5 stars "Great presentation of the public library and what it's really all about. Done with as much imagination and loving care as his earlier film, The Way. Also, his acting as a librarian is very amazing. As a librarian myself, I could not believe how well he captured the character."
  • 5 stars "Loved this thoughtful (and surprisingly funny) film. Do yourself a favour and see it!"
  • 5 stars "A gentle spotlight on a critical social issue makes this easy for the audience to engage throughout. Lovely comic relief and sensational twist ending. Loved it and will watch again!"