A surprising genre of movie has quietly invaded the cineplex. I speak not of those escapist superhero fantasies that have colonized our summer weekends, but rather their cinematic opposite: Stories that purport to be very, very real. A wave of real-life depictions — those movies “based on a true story” — have surreptitiously swarmed the mainstream.
That claim likely demands supporting evidence, and like a detective in the third act of a police procedural, I have the goods. Some quick data tabulation reveals this statistic: Over the past five years, a staggering 44 percent of Best Picture Oscar nominees have been based on true stories. (Compare that to around 15 percent four decades ago.) This acceleration towards authenticity shows no signs of