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A film noir centering around a hard-boiled, stylish kingpin drug dealer, called King David, who returns to his hometown seeking redemption--but ends up only finding violent death. King David's final moments are spent with Paul, an aspiring journalist who knew him for just a few minutes; yet King David would forever more have an impact on Paul's life. Half preacher, half Satan, and all street smarts, King David had recorded the story of his exploits on audiotape, leaving behind an often-poetic sermon on villainy and its consequences. The tapes reveal that the cycle of violence and retribution, which his actions have spawned, has come back to him, full circle, as he suspected they might all along.Written by
Sujit R. Varma
This is a story about revenge. If it were about somebody named Hamlet or Oedipus or Corleone then the violence would be described as in service to the art of the story. In this movie two young men, one black the other white, get caught up in a story of illegality and revenge. The two wind up tied together around the story of a third man, who one tries to rescue and one kills.
This is not a great movie; the soundtrack is predictable and the pacing is uneven. Still, when the dead guy starts talking, the viewer's perception changes, and that kind of moment indicates something is happening in the script and on the screen that is important. "He had this nobility..." the white character enthuses about the dead dealer to his black girlfriend. She is less than impressed. This is a movie where no one is noble: why is the white character hanging with a black girlfriend? Does he like her or does he need "street cred."
If race wasn't a part of this movie, then this would be a movie about characters who take a series of missteps and pay for them. However, in the reviews of this movie, because the main characters are black, it is a movie about depravity. Like the narrative of victims of Hurricane Katrina innocence or guilt... salvation or damnation... is determined by the color of skin. For a viewer who doesn't see skin color first, this is a well- acted, disturbing revenge story.
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