An Understated Blackness

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...

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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.

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