TL;DR – This is a heartbreaking film that soars thanks to a stunning performance but also struggles to stay out of its own way in parts.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
Disclosure – I was invited to a press screening of this film.
Till Review –
I am not sure there is anyone who is going to see this film that does not know what happened to Emmett Till on that awful day in Mississippi. The question is, how do you come to a movie when your audience already knows every terrible beat coming? Till’s answer to this question is to make every moment land with the force of a hurricane.
So to set the scene, it was Chicago in 1955, and Mamie Till (Danielle Deadwyler) is taking her son Emmett Till (Jalyn Hall) shopping for a new wallet and shoes because he is about to spend some time by himself down in Mississippi with his cousins. Mamie is concerned because he has never spent that amount of time away from her, and the South is not a safe place to be. But Emmett is having a blast with his cousins until he accidentally ‘offends’ a white woman Carolyn Bryant (Haley Bennett), and soon some white men come into his uncle’s (John Douglas Thompson) house and drag him out of bed.
TL;DR – A powerful film of courage in the face of insurmountable odds.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene
Disclosure – I paid to watch this film
The Woman King Review –
It is now time for us to take a look at the final film before we finalise our best of 2022 lists. The Woman King was a film that I tried to see several times when it was in cinemas, but the times never lined up. Indeed, I could only add it to the run-down because it just dropped on-demand. But in a year of stellar action films, we have another understanding contender to add to the mix.
So to set the scene, in West Africa in 1823, a new king Ghezo (John Boyega), has just ascended to power in the Kingdom of Dahomey. But they are under attack from the Oyo Empire, who have been pillaging Dahomey villages using proxies to sell the people to the Europeans as slaves to work in the plantations of Brazil. Ghezo is on the losing side of this war, but he has one last strength: the Agojie, led by Nanisca (Viola Davis). It is a time of castigation as many forces move inside and outside the palace, and it is uncertain if Dahomey can survive the coming storm.