Before I watched “Queen & Slim,” I read a review about how there’s an oversaturation of movies that negatively portray the black experience and how that needs to stop. The point was that, while this has led to some of the best films of the last few years, including “Fruitvale Station,” “12 Years a Slave” and “Moonlight,” that there are so many imitators (“The Hate U Give,” “Black and Blue,” “Waves”) that it portrays an atmosphere of how terrible it is to be black and that there’s nothing that can be done about it, especially since films that positively portray this are far fewer (the only one he could cite was “Black Panther”).
While I don’t fully agree with this sentiment, since these empathetic, culturally diverse films have given a new voice to cinema that it desperately needed, we have gotten to a point where films like “Queen & Slim” have become predictable in their modern tragedy, making the impact feel a bit hollow and forced at times. Even though the film is well acted, especially by Daniel Kaluuya and Jodie Turner-Smith, it often does feel like it is going through the motions of similar films, whether that’s “The Hate U Give,” or “Bonnie and Clyde.” So maybe there is a point about too many films that negatively portray the black experience – even if the films are good, some diversity would be welcomed.
Final Grade: B-