Feature film directorial debut for Sanaa Lathan, and she did an awesome job. Now streaming on #AmazonPrime. No Spoilers.
The story is structurally sound without being too predictable. This post is in celebration of the acting and directing of the film, but let's quickly discuss themes.
This film is based on the Angie Thomas novel of the same name. It deals with a level of police brutality, which I'm personally over, but I appreciated that it wasn't the focus of the film and was able to push the A-story, Bri's rap career, forward. Watch this film to see how they handle couching a deeper message instead of pushing an agenda.
The theme that resonated with me the most was children who must raise their parents and the pressure and stress it adds to their young lives. How because they see themselves as adults, they also think they've been on the planet long enough to know everything. When survival is always at the top of mind, you're willing to do anything. Beautifully done.
Now, to this cast. They kilt it. This is Jamilah's (@milabucks) first feature film, but her ability to express emotions with nuance makes her look like an OG on screen. She's now on my list of actors to work with. Of course, Sanaa is fabulous. We expect nothing else. Da'Vine leans into her character so tough that we can't help but laugh even when she isn't intending to be funny. We all know a Pooh.
Direction: This film is in the hip hop space. It could've easily been bright in color and light in tone. Sanaa's choices bring depth and breath where necessary. We sometimes feel we're literally in the kitchen with them reminiscing.
Check it out. Great family film.
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