Janelle Monáe performs in the music video "Make Me Feel" from the album "Dirty Computer" recorded for Wondaland and Atlantic Records. The music video begins with Janelle Monáe at a night ... See full summary »
Based in Atlanta, Earn and his cousin Alfred try to make their way in the world through the rap scene. Along the way they come face to face with social and economic issues touching on race, relationships, poverty, status, and parenthood.
Brian Tyree Henry,
A social satire that follows the stories of four black students at an Ivy League college where controversy breaks out over a popular but offensive black-face party thrown by white students. With tongue planted firmly in cheek, the film explores racial identity in acutely-not-post-racial America while weaving a universal story of forging one's unique path in the world.Written by
The invitation for the party as shown in the trailer is almost verbatim the invitation for a real life party that occurred at the University of California, San Diego, on February 10th, 2010. The synopsis and film take many cues from the UCSD "Compton Cookout," an event run by one African American but attended by UCSD's predominately white and Asian student body. The event itself went fine, but news about it prompted a massive uproar on campus. See more »
The flame on the candle in Sam's room on Halloween night is static, revealing that it is fake. See more »
Justin Simien's directorial debut should be lauded for its ambition, but as both a director and screenwriter, he has a long ways to go. An attractive cast of varying ability is saddled with an overstuffed script that has unnecessary subplots and diversions (while still having a convenient economy of characters), leaving a movie that lurches around from plot point to plot point, with some areas of that plot being underdeveloped and unconvincing.
Meanwhile, Simien the director is all over clever visuals and storytelling devices, yet he has a hard time dealing with various tones of the movie. More importantly, the pace of the film is leaden, which sucks the life out of some of the potentially humorous situations, while making some of the social commentary come off as more strident than need be. A lot of scenes feature awkward staging, with some actors seeming to not know what to do as a scene winds down.
The result is a movie with more than its fair share of nice moments and some winning performances, with almost no cohesion whatsoever. This is a shame, as Simien makes some good points throughout the movie on the state of race relations in America.
Roger Ebert noted that it's not necessarily what a movie is about, but how it is about it. The high praise for this movie represents the flip side of this notion, as it's getting plaudits for what it's about rather than its execution.
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