Over five years in the making, Emilio Estevez puts his all – bringing not only his political, but filmmaking passions to the forefront – in the award-winning Bobby . Using the hopes, dreams and aspirations of 22 fictional characters, Estevez creates an imaginary “what if” look at the 24 hours leading up to the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy; how the lives of these 22 people intertwined because of Kennedy and the events of the day and how each was impacted by his assassination.

Interspersing newsreels from the period, Estevez intricately weaves a tapestry of storied lives all drawn together on that fateful night in June 1968. Written and directed by Estevez, he creates characters from all walks of life, someone for everyone to relate to, from doormen to drunken lounge singers to socialites, starlets and dishwashers, demonstrating the vast appeal of Kennedy.

The cast reads like a Who's Who of Hollywood. Sir Anthony Hopkins, Emilio Estevez, Sharon Stone, Harry Belafonte, Freddy Rodriguez, Christian Slater, Helen Hunt, Martin Sheen, Lindsay Lohan, Joshua Jackson, Ashton Kutcher, Elijah Wood and William H. Macy. Entertaining is also the undeniably noticeable real-life connections of the cast.

Shot on location at the Ambassador during its razing, the film embodies history. Most impressive is the work of production designer Patti Podesta, who brought the Ambassador back to its original grandeur for filming. Primarily using a Steadicam with soft widescreen lensing, Estevez and cinematographer Michael Barrett blend current footage with archival, giving the film a documentary feel.

Particularly stimulating is the editing of Richard Chew, especially in the film's climactic moments. With rapid-fire precision, the scenes shift between actual newsreels and the characters, set against a speech Kennedy delivered following the King assassination, addressing ways to halt violence in the world.

As timely now as ever, Bobby reminds us that there was – and still is – hope of better things to come.

Grade: A