Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Night Catches Us

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated R for language, some sexuality and violence
Profanity:Very strong language
Nudity/Sex:Sexual references and non-explicit situation
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking, smoking
Violence/Scariness:Violence and police brutality with tragic consequences
Diversity Issues:Racism and sexism are themes of the movie
DVD Release Date:February 1, 2011

Writer-director Tanya Hamilton and two of today’s most gifted actors have produced a sensitive drama with a powerful conclusion. Night Catches Us takes on some of the most complicated and painful issues of the era that saw the struggle for civil rights shift from “We shall overcome” to “Burn, baby, burn.” It is rare that we see those issues portrayed, rarer still that we see them explored with any recognition of complexity and nuance, and just about unheard of that we see how much more complicated and nuanced the issues were for the women.

It is 1976, and the United States is celebrating its 200th birthday. Some Americans are still feeling marginalized, neglected, or locked out.

Marcus (Anthony Mackie) who returns to his home in Philadelphia following the death of his preacher father. He seems rootless and restless. But it is immediately clear when he sees Patricia (another exquisite performance by Kerry Washington), a lawyer and single mother, that they have some history and that he wants to know whether they might have a future.

No one else seems happy to see Marcus, even his brother. It is apparent that the people he left behind feel abandoned and betrayed by him. Everyone seems to think he is the one who gave the police information that led to the death of one of the leaders of the Black Power movement. But it is also clear that he is a good man. Could he be protecting someone?

This is a sincere, thoughtful exploration of complex issues and complicated people. Washington and Mackie, who appeared together in “She Hate Me” give performances of great depth and dignity, spare but endlessly compelling and evocative. The story’s ambitions at times outstrip the ability of first-timer Hamilton, but it is those very ambitions that give the film its exceptional power. At its conclusion, we have to confront our own assumptions to recognize that it is really not Marcus’ story after all, and the whole movie opens up to deepen our appreciation and insight.



Previous Posts

What's Up With My Family? -- App Helps Middle Schoolers Navigate Life
Middle School Confidential™ 3: What’s Up with My Family? is a new IOS app, the next installment of the series for tweens and teens. The third edition continues the story of Jack, Jen, Chris, Abby, Mateo, and Michelle—a tight-knit group of friends in middle school—who are realizing that growi

posted 3:59:49pm Aug. 20, 2014 | read full post »

The Simpsons Binge Watch: Every Episode Plus the Movie
Get your food delivery menus ready.  Unplug your phone.  All 552 Simpsons episodes will be broadcast in order, starting tomorrow. [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qq4w74r8HKY#t=27[/youtube] The new season starts September 28.

posted 3:59:35pm Aug. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Bo Svenson
Bo Svenson is an actor, writer, director, judo champion, and, as I was lucky enough to find out, an enthralling guy to talk to, turning an interview into a wide-ranging conversation. Svenson was

posted 3:59:35pm Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Tribute: Don Pardo
Don Pardo's face was not familiar.  But his voice was instantly recognizable.  We mourn the loss of one of the great announcers in broadcast history, who died on Monday at age 96. The cast of "Saturday Night Live," where he served as announcer from the beginning, celebrated his 90th birthday.

posted 12:44:03pm Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Interview: Gayle Forman of "If I Stay"
Gayle Forman is the author of If I Stay, the source for this week's movie starring Chloë Grace Moretz as Mia, a talented young cellist in a coma following a car accident.  As she hovers between life and death, she remembers incidents from her life with her family and with her rock musician boyfrie

posted 8:00:16am Aug. 19, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.