Mr. Jones ★★½

It can be a terrible burden to be able to see the future, particularly when the rest of the world seems blind to the present. Seldom has that fact been more sobering than it is in Agnieszka Holland’s urgent but disjointed “Mr. Jones,” the true (and somewhat unknown) story of a young man who was cursed with the ability to see what was coming next, as well as the determination to recognize the full horror of what was already there.

An ill-conceived prologue notwithstanding, Holland’s well-intentioned and characteristically unsentimental thriller begins in a musty corner of 1933, where a wide-eyed young Welsh journalist named Gareth Jones is convinced that Adolf Hitler poses a serious threat to the rest of the world. Played by an earnest James Norton (who offsets his natural good looks with a pronounced streak of “do the right thing” dorkiness), Jones is laughed off by the other, more elder advisors to former British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, who think the lad an overeager worrywart. Never mind that Jones has just interviewed Hitler on the Nazi leader’s private aircraft and was so alarmed by the conversation that he wondered how many lives would be spared if the plane fell out of the sky; the Great War has already happened, and the world is only spinning forward.

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