• The White Tiger

    Is this just another passive servant movie, like Gone With the Wind, The Help or Roma? Or ... [ Read More ]

    The White Tiger
  • Locked Down

    It may be 2021’s first viable COVID-themed movie. Hopefully it’s not the best audiences can ... [ Read More ]

    Locked Down
  • Herself

    She’s building from the ground up. Her self-esteem, confidence and a home.  Physical, ... [ Read More ]

    Herself
  • Sylvie’s Love

    It’s love at first sight. That’s true for the couple in this romantic period film and for audiences ... [ Read More ]

    Sylvie’s Love
  • Soul

    Passing the love of jazz on to a younger generation, cloaked in the sweetness of an animated movie, ... [ Read More ]

    Soul
  • Best Films 2020

    2020 kept us on our toes. Adapting became a way of life—especially for films and their fans. Part of ... [ Read More ]

    Best Films 2020
  • The Closet

    A child becomes a demon. It’s a cliché in the horror film genre. So how does a smart filmmaker avoid ... [ Read More ]

    The Closet
  • Farewell Amor

    Absence doesn’t’ always make the heart grow fonder. Sometimes the heart forgets. That’s the case in ... [ Read More ]

    Farewell Amor
  • Billie

    She had an enigmatic presence. A unique, restrained voice with distinctive phrasing. Wrote and sang ... [ Read More ]

    Billie
  • Tripping with Nils Frahm

    In the age of COVID, live performances are taking a real hit. If you’ve been longing for a night out ... [ Read More ]

    Tripping with Nils Frahm
  • Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

    Who’s the Mother of the Blues? Better say Ma Rainey! 1927. It’s a steamy Chicago summer, just ... [ Read More ]

    Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  • Sound of Metal

    It’s a struggle. Losing one of your senses can be devastating. But that’s the reality a punk-metal ... [ Read More ]

    Sound of Metal

The Forty-Year-Old Version

Forty. Something about that age puts people on a precipice. Too old to be young. Too young to be old. And if your career hasn’t taken off by that age…well. Will it ever? This is the space where The Forty-Year-Old Version resides. A crossroads. Radha Blank, a Harlem-based writer, is known for her NEA Award-winning plays (SEED), TV writing […]

Black Films & Artists Matter at the 2020 Toronto International Film Festival

TIFF has always been a haven for black films and artists. And now, in this year of BLM, it has stepped up its game showing a particular reverence for African diaspora films. In 2020, film festivals are finding creative ways to present movies to a vast audience as safely as possible. TIFF took a holistic approach. […]

From The Bronx To The World: Ghetto Gastro Is The Movement’s Kitchen

Happy to say that I was a contributing writer for the September/October issue of Essence Magazine. I wrote a profile on a culinary collective from the Bronx, New York that supports BLM and is changing the way chefs enter the food industry. Check out the article in the Essence Eats section and don’t forget to […]

Sibyl

If an audience can relate to a protagonist and her plight, they’re hooked. If a character is fascinating in some way—even diabolical—viewers will pay attention. Relatable? Fanciful? No. Sibyl is puzzling. That’s it. Sibyl (Virginie Efira) is bored with her life as a psychotherapist. As her patients lie on a couch revealing their deepest fears, checkered pasts and testy problems, their doc is M.I.A. Physically she’s in the room. Mentally she’s focused on herself. Surprising her husband and leaving her […]

Tenet

Warner Bros delayed the release of Tenet during the pandemic until it could open it  in theaters. It was a wise decision. The film belongs on a big screen. In fact, for maximum effect, viewers should consider experiencing  the movie in an IMAX theater. Director/writer Christopher Nolan is nearly unequaled when it comes to giving audiences unimaginable, spellbinding visuals: The Dark Knight, Inception, […]

The 2020 American Black Film Festival – Going Virtual

In the age of COVID, film festival directors are finding creative ways to screen movies for audiences without gathering large groups at indoor venues. Hence the 2020 ABFF Online Edition. For those who tuned in, the array of films for the 24th festival by black artists was vast. These movies will do the film festival circuit […]

The 24th

Audiences can learn so much from historical events that are inspiring and sometimes just profound. When filmmakers choose the latter and decide to recreate a tragedy, it’s a risky endeavor. One that doesn’t always reward its audience.  The third Battalion of the all-black Twenty-fourth United States Infantry Regiment consists of 156 soldiers and is stationed in Houston in 1917 during WWI. The troops are often harassed […]

Project Power

Move over Molly. You’ve got competition! Folks in New Orleans are downing potent capsules dubbed Power that can give them superpowers. What’s the catch? The energy rush only lasts for minutes and it’s very unpredictable. Who in the world could think up such a novel premise? Point your finger at screenwriter Mattson Tomlin (upcoming The Batman). […]

Yusuf Hawkins: Storm Over Brooklyn

Decades ago, long before BLM protestors marched and chanted “George Floyd—I can’t breathe,” demonstrators shouted “Yusuf. Yusuf. Yusuf. No justice, no peace.” Racially motivated crimes that ignite outrage have a long history. One of the most heinous felonies provides a back story to today’s struggles. On August 23, 1989, Yusuf Hawkins, a 16-year-old Brooklynite from East New York, traveled to the unfamiliar Brooklyn neighborhood of Bensonhurst with friends contemplating the purchase of used 1982 Pontiac. Unbeknownst to him the largely Italian/American community was hostile to Blacks. Some […]

Out Stealing Horses

When the title of a film is more vibrant than anything you’ll see on the screen, it’s an issue. The source material for this meandering and overly sentimental coming-of-age drama is the bestselling novel of the same name by Norwegian author Per Petterson. The focus is on a 67-year-old man named Trond (Stellan Skarsgård, Chernobyl) who relocates to rural Norway, a trip that […]