Guava Island (2019) Poster

(2019)

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8/10
Pleasantly Surprised...
KingKongKyle13 April 2019
Guava Island could have been a lavish vanity project. Instead it's a little movie with a big heart. Full of musicality, beautiful locations, cinematography and people. Charming performances and a message to boot. It's also old school in the best possible way. Don't miss it! 8/10
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5/10
Interesting experiment that works better as an hour long music video rather than a film
brandonhjbt19 April 2019
TL;DR - A pretty average movie with decent writing, a paper thin plot, and underdeveloped (but well acted) characters. However it is a fun movie to watch and you will enjoy yourself for the short 55 minute run time (probably more if you are a Childish Gambino fan like myself)

Plot - My biggest complaint with the movie as a whole. The plot in the movie is virtually non existent and just serves as a framework for events in the movie to happen the way they do. It boils down to Deni Maroon (Donald Glover) wants to throw a performance and the boss of the island (Nonso Anozie) doesn't want there to be one cause he doesn't want the people to miss a day of work. There feels like there is no conflict or any tension (which was probably what was intended) in the plot until around ¾ of the way into the movie where the movie takes a sizable risk that really does nothing in the grand scheme of the movie as it comes too late for it to have any repercussions on the plot. Overall the plot was pretty non existent and is the worst element of the film

Characters - All well acted and everyone looks like they're having a good time which translates into the actors having good chemistry with one another. All of them, excluding Donald Glover's character, are all painfully underdeveloped and it's hard to care for any of them other than Deni Maroon (Donald Glover). The main antagonist (Nonso Anozie) also has no real motivation against Deni and his reasoning is just plain stupid and irrational which makes his character pretty laughable. Kofi Novia (Rihanna) is the love interest of Deni and gets the most character development outside of Deni and although she is a large part of the story, she doesn't really do anything outside of being a plot device (and she barely is that). If anything I would have loved to see Deni and Kofi's relationship developed over more than 3 scenes in the movie. Deni Maroon (Donald Glover) gets all the development and is definitely a likeable protagonist, not much more to say about him. Yara Love (Letitia Wright) is Kofi's co-worker and serves no function in the story, best I can say about her is that Letitia looks like she's having a blast playing her in this movie.

Music - Well implemented and mixed well. Whether you like the songs in the movie comes down to personal taste (they're all part of Childish Gambino / Donald Glover's catalog of music, I won't spoil which ones). The instrumental in the background of some scenes however is great and fits the setting and tone of the movie perfectly; the best element of the movie in my opinion

Cinematography - Not much to say here, it's serviceable. However the film is presented with a weird aspect ratio that you may like or dislike

All other elements of the movie like the sound design and editing were all serviceable, nothing terrific but nothing too bad at all worth mentioning

Overall the movie works better in my opinion as an hour long music video, rather than a film as the plot and characters were either done poorly or were painfully average to the point where the music elements of the film were the shining components and show what this movie could have been with better film elements. With that being said it is most certainly a fun watch when you have an hour to kill. (5/ 10)
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6/10
Perhaps it's a movie, a music video, a short film, a commercial, an art-piece or some sort of visual album. Undeniably, it's an experiment.
Pjtaylor-96-13804416 April 2019
In some ways, 'Guava Island (2019)' is a feature film, albeit a very short one. In other, arguably more, ways, it simply isn't. Trying to categorise this surprise release is no easy task. It straddles the line between movie, music video, short film, commercial, art-piece, visual album and parable. Essentially, it's all of these things. Undeniably, it's a bit of an experiment. It's also, no matter which way you cut it, a story. This is a relief, regardless of the narrative's simplicity, because it allows the piece to pretty much fly by, telling a tale that actually feels quite purposeful, if well-worn, in the process. It's framed as a mother's story, which is fitting considering its fleeting and somewhat 'faded' nature, and it certainly plays out more as a kind of 'moral' than anything else. It isn't ineffective but it is, as I mentioned, rather broad, culminating in a bitter-sweet finale that doesn't necessarily hold up to all that much scrutiny. There isn't all that much emotional resonance, either. The bare-bones beats hold weight, of course, and there is some threat that causes adequate tension, but the piece seems to try every check-list trick in the book to get your tear-ducts working to no real result. Some of the themes are quite powerful but they hit the head more than the heart, which is fine but doesn't feel intentional and makes for quite cold viewing. It does feel like Glover wants to say something with this. Its actual construction is a bit bizarre, as it bounces from being a fairly serious drama to an incredibly off-beat musical from scene to scene. This causes a lack of cohesion, as does the choice to often layer the actual Gambino songs, non-diegetically, above the lead character's diegetic singing - which creates a seriously strange effect that I can't quite explain. It's also slightly strange that the music is, from what I could tell, exclusively pre-existing Gambino, but I guess that just adds to the affair's overall intangible nature. In any case, when 'This Is America' starts playing it's very distracting. Despite all this, the flick does exude a rather strong sense of atmosphere and conveys a decent amount of character, too. It isn't groundbreaking, though: the story isn't great and I wouldn't even say it's the best way to listen to the music. Still, it's an interesting quirk that's fun enough while it lasts. 6/10
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3/10
A sloppy, 56-minute music video
Mike_Devine14 April 2019
Donald Glover and Rihanna are both incredibly talented individuals. Whether in the studio, on stage or in front of the camera, these two young music legends usually receive critical acclaim when it's deserved. In 'Guava Island,' however, the two team up but the end result is underwhelming at best.

To be fair, at 56 minutes, 'Guava' is never billed as a full-length feature film in the vein that other recent music-themed movies were (like 'A Star is Born' or 'Bohemian Rhapsody'). Still, the disjointed story, awkward camerawork and throwaway music numbers kinda say all there is to say about the effort (although the "This is America" bit is pretty cool). And Rihanna's talents are basically wasted.

Many will sing the praises of 'Guava Island' just because who's involved. But it's really more like a smushed guava fruit that's been sitting out in the island sunshine for a bit too long.
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7/10
This is Guava Island!
AhmedSpielberg9913 April 2019
It's unfortunate that all the creativity ran out of steam just when the main plot kicked off, because all the familiarity could have been easily unfelt with a bit of the imagination Hiro Murai embellished the first act with; the animated intro sequence is a case in point. Nevertheless, almost everything else in this little movie is amazing; Donald Glover's vibrant performance, and his electrifying songs, Rihanna's charisma and lovely narration voice-over, Letitia Wright's appeal (her character is completely unnecessary, though), the lively and colourful cinematography that made the titular island anything but fictional place, just to name a few!

(7.5/10)
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4/10
Don't get too excited
mdilly13 April 2019
This had the feel of a short that was way too long, or a movie that was overzealously edited. No character development, no real narrative - I'd have liked to see it 30 mins longer and fleshed out properly, as at 55 minutes it falls short whilst simultaneously being too long.
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10/10
Guava Island
joshuacristof-0995713 April 2019
This movie isn't just about Donald Glover (Childish Gambino) it's Hiro Murai's chance to prove he isn't just a director that does tv shows. Murai branches out into a movie that's essentially a big music video with a movie type plot. Murai does not disappoint in Guava Island he perfectly captures the retro look and gets the best out of the talent in this movie. I would highly recommend this movie as the acting is superb and the direction is superb.
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6/10
it's good but...
austinacl0213 April 2019
So I'm a huge Gambino fan to the point where if anything Gambino related comes out, I'll automatically try to find all the good in it instead of the bad. Often times, I let my fandom get in the way of quality, but Glover is a man of quality. When I heard this project was going to happen, I had high hopes for it. All I knew is Hiro Murai was going to direct it which was a great sign, Glover would be in it, and he's bringing Rihanna along for the ride, how can he mess this up. And while it is his project, it's written by his brother. I liked this film, but I'm not letting my fandom get in the way of how I genuinely see this film as a film. It was structurally broken at points and I feel as if it used the excuse of being short to get away with less story telling. But the animated story at the beginning didn't do much for me and felt very cliche. The film only strived with the way it was shot and the music scenes, however since his music plays at points out of nowhere, it takes away from the movie and seems like either filler or just Donald giving us what he has already given us and that's a bit disappointing to me. Nothing in this film was new music wise and it feels like wasted potential to do something big. But again, I am a fan, and I overall enjoyed it, it does however have many flaws that hold it down from being way better. So would I recommend it? That depends, if you're a Glover/Gambino fan then go check it out, but if you don't like him, or are not a fan of his, you might want to steer clear from this one. 3/5
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7/10
Great movie compensates for avarage writting with other great elements.
Escobar51213 April 2019
I thought that the writing was pretty much average, but in this case, and knowing Gambino´s work as well as Murai's, I can tell that this is case in which quality of the story can be overshadowed by excellent direction and photography as well as an ambitious way to merge Gambino's music with the story itself.

It puts you in a pretty relaxing tropical vibe throughout all 55 minutes of runtime (which I find an excellent format to make movie, I would like to see more short films like this), and of course Gambino's always quirky characters makes you rapidly fall for him and his dreams.

Some things were predictable in the way the story was told, others didn't make much sense to me, but I find it to be an entertaining movie that brings you some joy and offers you a refreshing experience in the greater scheme of cinema.
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10/10
Complete Genius
anniesibbs13 April 2019
This short film is none like any other. The artistry, music and meaning in this film is totally worth the watch.!
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2/10
56minutes music video
Pedi_714 April 2019
This is not a movie really!i like childish gambino musics and clips but that's another thing this wasn't movie and there is no real story ,all there is some cliche and also Rihanna was at her worst role
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3/10
Why?
bobcozzi15 April 2019
Watching this collection of shots (not a movie or story so much as just scenes edited together) you have to wonder again how these kinds of projects get funding. So many movies like this one have good production values but such awful storylines that you are brought back to amateur night at the writing class.
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9/10
Exceeded my expectations
riedhwaankarriem15 April 2019
Gave me a feel of Michael Jackson's Moonwalker. Could have been longer, however it had a very brief story and great music
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10/10
Masterpiece!
lucas_de13 April 2019
An incredible film about the exploitation of capitalism, and great social criticism.
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10/10
Short but great plot
keeytiecd13 April 2019
I love how he incorporated his music into the film. Kept my attention the whole film. Ending was bitter sweet
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1/10
Not his "Purple Rain"
Joel_Goodsen14 April 2019
It's a slight film. Glover has charisma, but it's a short film...simplistic...not that much music. It's not his "Purple Rain" as some refer to it...it's more like his "Under A Cherry Moon". It feels Ike they went on vacation with their friends and decided to make a movie as their vacation activity.
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8/10
Slick and Stylish
rohithkuma916 April 2019
Guava island is about the freedom of the oppressed people , their one-day musical festival. It dealt serious issues in our society in a light manner. Donald Glover and Rihanna Came up with a brilliant performances and the music was really good . The direction was cool and slick. The only disappointment for me was it ended quickly, it's just 55min long like an extended short film. If you're free and want something refreshing and soothing, watch it.
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10/10
OMG
harleykalksgp13 April 2019
Warning: Spoilers
The film is pure and tells a beautiful and strong story, a real story of what happens in the world, it was exciting!
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7/10
Been a fan of Gambino forever but...
Zephrey15 April 2019
So I'll start by saying the movie is enjoyable, but it has it's problematics. Biggest thing being Rihanna's character, she didn't really do anything in the film, and she just seemed so much like wasted potential, I thought she would sing at least once, but there was nothing. Secondly the major thing everyones been complaining about even the people who liked it. The movie was too short. It was too short to get attached to any of the character's, when watching Deni and Kofi on screen, I never saw them, I just saw Bino and Riri, the film is just too short to build anything up. The movie is also very guessable from the start. Now the positives of the film, The transitions of the songs were very well done, and they way they just randomly appeared was really unique, being a Bino fan it was super fun to sing along to. Then we got the aesthetic, which was super beautiful, I'm going to want a few screencaps for sure. Then of course the symbolism, lastly the Cinematography, Hiro Murai never fails to impress me, all the scenes looked beautiful. The biggest disappointment for me was not having any new Gambino music in the movie, but in all honesty if you haven't heard of Childish Gambino or don't know much about him, this might be a great chance for you to discover some of his other stuff, and you might even like the movie a lot more than me
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5/10
Rigged reviews
sclafunk26 April 2019
This was awful. So many sites have been caught rigging and inflating review scores for movies, mostly marvel/Disney, but there's others as well; that are essentially social engineering. I'm guessing this is one of those rigged scores. An overwhelming majority of the 10 score reviews on here are generic statements that can be applied to any movie by Accts that have only reviewed this movie. The only reason I gave it a 5 is in honor of Rhianna's Fivehead. That thing is an evolving ecosystem.
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1/10
Seriously...
dlbott25 April 2019
Wow, talk about inflated review.. this is ridiculous...

Not a movie lol, just a really long Rhi who music video....

If this is what u have must resort to sell more cd's then u should just quit.

Actress, well, sorry, NOT...

I know this will be harsh to many but what a waste of time that you can't get back lol. So no, from that stance, not harsh enough.

If you like really really long music video's that never seem to end, this is your cup of tea.... otherwise just download cd music lol.... least you can drive and listen to it lol....
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8/10
Stay Woke!
wjosephjorob17 April 2019
A hour long video musical to further exploit the talents of Donald Glover, this came across in a rather pleasant way expressing the dangers of Capitol-ism and how it effect you socially, what better way to present it to the viewer thru music and good music at that, we need more short term entertain like this, a good little watch.
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10/10
Guava Island
juju_rfarias13 April 2019
The movie is so beautiful and also real. It shows how you have to be focus and determined. Gambino is incredible in the movie. Rihanna looks so real.
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10/10
PERFECTION
chcfjekdsjcj13 April 2019
VERRY Authentic one of the best short films I have ever watched Rihanna whew a actress sweetie and childish gambino did that!!🙌
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10/10
Perfect
hptc14514 April 2019
This movie was dope so much creativity so much culture and charisma meshed together perfectly
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