I love the cinema. I am a self-professed cinephile. I am happiest sat in a dark room ready to be whisked off into whatever reality the film wants to take me.
I’m overjoyed that there are serious films out this year that feature black and brown actors. Films that have been recognised by the Academy no matter how problematic they are. If you’re on Twitter then you’ll be well aware of the #OscarsSoWhite controversy that dominated the awards season last year.
I’d tweeted The Electric checking if they would be screening Fences. I was really happy that they were as I prefer to see as many films as possible at my local independent cinema. I love The Electric. It’s the oldest cinema in the UK. Even the toilet chains are still intact. The staff are friendly and they show blockbusters as well as arthouse films that may be overlooked by the larger multiplex.
Without disclosing spoilers, Fences is about a black family in 1950s Pittsburgh. The drama centres on the family’s relationships with each other and the struggles within marriage, racial equality and coming of age.
The evening had an unexpected start. A poor couple were startled by a mouse in Screen 2. I couldn’t help but overhear as they were stood right next to me at the bar. (Oh yeah, they’re fully licensed for alcohol in the screen room). I’m glad I didn’t see it otherwise I would have been freaked out as well. Saying that I have 3 cats so should be used to unwelcome visits from our little rodent friends. As long as little Remy didn’t steal any of my tortilla chips I wasn’t fussed.
I enjoyed Fences. Not to be biased because it featured actors who I already admire and respect but the acting was superb. I have to say, you could feel that it was an adaptation. I bet it would be absolutely electric (no pun intended) on stage. It really made me want to go to the theatre as I haven’t been in ages.
Initially, I found the dialogue a little hard to understand. The Pittsburgh accent was a little hard to get used to so that was a little distracting. Sidenote: I always watch movies and TV shows with subtitles because I hate missing dialogue and sometimes actors simply don’t enunciate!
Fences was emotional without being overly sentimental, I found myself resonating with the family dynamic and it had some great humour which I didn’t expect. I’d love to see it on the stage.
The biggest surprise for me was Denzel Washington directed it. I didn’t have a clue as I deliberately tried to avoid any spoilers or reviews before seeing it. He should be very proud. I found myself wanting to be closer to the actors. There were key scenes that I kept imagining how powerful they would be on the stage. I definitely recommend seeing it, for Viola Davis’ performance alone.
I’ll be seeing Moonlight and Hidden Figures at The Electric next.
Love blackpistachio x