An Understated Blackness

More

I stayed up till two in the morning last night, watching Medicine for Melancholy. I think Negroes should see this movie, and then show it to their teen-age kids. It's been a long time since I've seen black people, in any form, depicted as beautifully as Barry Jenkins does in his feature debut. I like to say this a lot, but "beautiful" is not synonymous with "pretty." 


So I don't mean the dilettante blackness of Love Jones (which I still kind of ride for) and I don't mean the Striver's Row blackness of The Best Man (which I like a lot less.) I mean a confident, near-silent blackness. Jenkins' touch is Faulknerian. There's a plot but it's not really the point. The movie is about how Jenkins uses the camera, to translate the language of human movement. 

I love this scene...

Jump to comments
Presented by

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What's the Number One Thing We Could Do to Improve City Life?

A group of journalists, professors, and non-profit leaders predict the future of livable, walkable cities


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Entertainment

From This Author

Just In