The main reason I was excited to see this film was because it was written by Lena Waithe. I haven’t actually seen anything she wrote, but her reputation proceeds her with enough praise that I knew I’d be in for something good. Something timely and insightful and powerful. That’s exactly what we got.
Daniel Kaluuya is on a mediocre at best date with Jodie Turner-Smith. He’s driving her home, likely to never see her again once she leaves the car. Or so he thinks. They get pulled over by a shady cop. Things go south and the cop ends up dead. The near strangers now find themselves on the run together, an unwitting Bonnie and Clyde. But the reason this film is so powerful is that it’s less about the events unfolding on screen, and more about its greater context off screen.
Story wise, it’s pretty straightforward. The meat of it is in their relationship to each other and to the people they interact with. I found a beauty in the sense of community and support they were finding in the most unlikely places (the dance hall scene was particularly moving). The way their relationship evolved and grew was also beautiful. These two people who could barely tolerate each other one day became closer and closer and eventually couldn’t exist without the other. In any other story, this would be hailed as a sweet romance. It’s still a very romantic and sexy film, but that’s secondary to the social commentary.
I feel like I could keep talking about this for hours if I were to just let myself go back to the mindset I was in while I watched. But that’s a very heavy and devastating place to return to as I’m writing this on a lazy Saturday morning. Maybe it’s better to let you experience this film for yourself
Queen & Slim – \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/