Rebecca Hall directs Tessa Thompson, Ruth Negga and André Holland in this period drama set during the Harlem Renaissance following the reunion of two light skinned African American women who can “pass” for white.
Anyone who watched the TV adaptation of Preacher will know Ruth Negga has a charm and an intensity that lights up the screen. This is the best showcase for her yet as a devil may care agent of chaos on Tessa Thompson’s more formal, staid, “worthy” lifestyle. The movie can be a little Brechtian at times, feeling like a series of short plays, very fixed and almost deadpan. But the emotions hidden behind that enforced flatness bubble away alluringly. Eduard Grau’s cinematography is sumptuous and painterly, like a photo being developed but not yet fully fixed.
Perfect Double Bill: Shadows (1959)
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