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QUEEN & SLIM Hits Oz

from ABC Australia

Queen and Slim recasts a ripped-from-the-headlines scenario of police violence as a get-away road movie

By Keva York

A black and white image from the movie Queen and Slim with Daniel Kaluuya & Jodie Turner-Smith posing on a car
PHOTO: Emmy-winning writer Lena Waithe (Master of None) got the idea for Queen and Slim from a conversation she had with author James Frey at a party. (Supplied: Universal)

The debut feature from Melina Matsoukas, who cut her teeth directing notably fierce music videos for the likes of Beyonce and Rihanna, is not shy about aspiring to be counted amongst the canon of blistering, politically-charged road movies.

“Well, if it isn’t the black Bonnie and Clyde,” a pimp outfitted in yellow Gucci greets Queen & Slim’s eponymous couple — played by Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out) and British model-turned-actor Jodie Turner-Smith (Jett) — when they turn up on the doorstep of his ramshackle New Orleans whorehouse, looking to be sheltered, if only briefly, from the law on their trail.

While it’s true that Matsoukas offers up a string of characteristically colourful, sultry, and pointed set pieces — a style best exemplified by her video for Beyonce’s black feminist banger Formation — the film is hampered by a paucity of both internal logic and depth, which reduces the impact of a would-be empowering message about African-American pride in the face of police brutality.

[ click to continue reading at ABC Australia ]

Posted on March 18, 2020 by Editor

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