Shadow and Act

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
My Name Is Pauli Murray (2021) Aramide Tinubu Tightly edited and informative, My Name is Pauli Murray is a knockout documentary proving that despite American society's fragility, the strides that we have made are often the work of the most underprivileged. EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2021
Passing (2021) Trey Mangum Passing is as good as its performances and rests on their shoulders. Negga is the film's powerful secret weapon, proving every bit that she deserved the Academy Award back in 2017 for Loving. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2021
R#J (2021) Aramide Tinubu R#J never quite delivers a refreshing and bold take on Romeo and Juliet, the ideas are there, but it never quite comes together. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2021
Judas and the Black Messiah (2021) Aramide Tinubu More than anything, what Judas and the Black Messiah presents is a full tapestry of a young man who was truly for the people. EDIT
Posted Feb 1, 2021
MLK/FBI (2020) Trey Mangum MLK/FBI may just boil down to being an amalgamation of things we've suspected, but it is still a must-watch to be educated on how dangerous the FBI and government can be with surveillance, especially given current events. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2021
Soul (2020) Aramide Tinubu Soul is nuanced and layered, but it's not perfect. Yet, despite the serious themes, the richness of the narrative and the stunning jazz score make it more than worthwhile. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2021
Concrete Cowboy (2020) Trey Mangum McLaughlin proves that he is a leading star and worthy of the big things that are undoubtedly coming his way. EDIT
Posted Sep 14, 2020
One Night in Miami (2020) Trey Mangum Adapting this body of work for the big screen, considering the fact that it mostly takes place within the confines of a single room, was a challenge as well. Still, King takes everything head-on, with excellent results. EDIT
Posted Sep 11, 2020
Call Me Kuchu (2012) Shadow and Act Staff A necessary, yet cinematic call for action. EDIT
Posted May 28, 2020
Atlantics (2019) Kathleen Anaza The film is as aesthetically beautiful as it is a visionary social commentary. EDIT
Posted Mar 11, 2020
Premature (2019) Nijla Mu'min This film explores the very real ways that love heals, that it transforms, that it tests and changes us. EDIT
Posted Feb 21, 2020
We Are the Dream: The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest (2020) Aramide Tinubu This film is about being seen, the power of words and understanding that if we allow children to examine the world through their own eyes, we might be alright in the end. EDIT
Posted Feb 20, 2020
The Photograph (2020) Aramide Tinubu Stella Meghie's The Photograph adds to the canon of Black Love on screen and shows that Black sensuality, romance and love stories can be beautifully illustrated without the backdrops of financial hardships or jilting trauma. EDIT
Posted Feb 14, 2020
Come Away (2020) Trey Mangum In a different world, Come Away may have very well worked as an animated film that would have toned down a lot of its darker elements. But as it stands now, unfortunately, Chapman's prior works reign far more supreme. EDIT
Posted Feb 3, 2020
The Last Shift (2020) Aramide Tinubu The film never gets to the root of their issues or the reasons for their disconnection. EDIT
Posted Feb 3, 2020
Farewell Amor (2020) Aramide Tinubu It's a captivating and well-acted character study about connection, loss and the emotional labor needed for second chances. EDIT
Posted Feb 3, 2020
Time (2020) Aramide Tinubu While most films on mass incarceration and prison reform place their audiences in jails and courtrooms, Time does something different. EDIT
Posted Feb 3, 2020
Sylvie's Love (2020) Aramide Tinubu Sylvie's Love is a film that has romance, beauty and the delights and wonder of Black life. EDIT
Posted Jan 30, 2020
Charm City Kings (2020) Trey Mangum With themes that sit at a three-way intersection of teen angst, toxic masculinity deconstruction and racial marginalization, Charm City Kings is one of the most impressive films of the year. EDIT
Posted Jan 29, 2020
The Forty-Year-Old Version (2020) Aramide Tinubu Vulnerable but vibrant in all of it's black, white and grey-hued glory, The 40-Year-Old Version is an ode to BLACK Harlem, fearlessness and the art of putting yourself on. EDIT
Posted Jan 28, 2020
Zola (2020) Trey Mangum Despite the fact that the film doesn't quite follow through after hitting its stride, the movie is still a good time. Bravo continues to be a filmmaker to watch and these obnoxious characters will stay with viewers for some time. EDIT
Posted Jan 28, 2020
Softie (2020) Aramide Tinubu Softie is a grim assessment of both the cost of revolution and modern-day manhood. EDIT
Posted Jan 27, 2020
Miss Juneteenth (2020) Aramide Tinubu Despite its earlier stumbles, sticking with Miss Juneteenth is beyond rewarding. In addition to Beharie's absolute magnetism, what is unveiled is a stunning mother/daughter tapestry about the sacrifices of motherhood. EDIT
Posted Jan 27, 2020
Cuties (2020) Aramide Tinubu More than a commentary on the predatory behaviors of men, and the adultification of young girls, Cuties is a reminder that young minds are fragile and eager. EDIT
Posted Jan 27, 2020
Bad Hair (2020) Aramide Tinubu ... despite the great acting and nuances of Black womanhood, especially as it pertains to our relationship with our hair... Bad Hair doesn't quite know what it wants to say, leaving its audience stumbling around for answers. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2020
Just Mercy (2019) Brooke Obie That message is revolutionary and makes Just Mercy more than "just" a movie; it's a movement, a way of being, a radical call to action. It's on all of us to answer the call. EDIT
Posted Jan 13, 2020
Queen & Slim (2019) Brooke Obie Without the medicine, Queen & Slim is just digging around in the wound. EDIT
Posted Nov 27, 2019
The Little Mermaid Live! (2019) Monique Jones The characters needed room to grow as the story developed, and we didn't get that story development. Instead, the production seemed to rely on viewers having already seen the animated movie. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2019
Harriet (2019) Brooke Obie Though Harriet has the ingredients for an impactful cinematic experience--an empowered Black woman protagonist, Black love and Black revolutionaries--the film has too many problems that were never resolved. EDIT
Posted Oct 28, 2019
Joker (2019) Trey Mangum The huge problem with the film's storytelling is that it insults its audience's intelligence and toys with our perception, treating both as an afterthought. EDIT
Posted Oct 3, 2019
Dolemite Is My Name (2019) Trey Mangum Earlier reports of the film mistakenly assumed that Murphy's Dolemite Is My Name was a remake of the original 1975 Blaxploitation film Dolemite. Fortunately, Murphy's film is an empowering underdog story EDIT
Posted Sep 13, 2019
Hustlers (2019) Trey Mangum Consisting of the scrappy storytelling qualities of an indie film yet having the crowd-pleasing mentality of blockbusters, Hustlers will hopefully pave the way for investment in these types of narratives. EDIT
Posted Sep 12, 2019
Black & Privileged: Volume 1 (2019) Porscheoy Brice Though much of the content covered by the film is serious in nature, there are bits of humor throughout that add a lighter tone to the topics being addressed. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019
Emanuel (2019) Mia N. Hall Expect to be hurt, angered, and also inspired by those who survived one of the greatest tragedies in American history. EDIT
Posted Jun 18, 2019
Ma (2019) Brooke Obie The groundwork is there... And yet, Ma never really gets to be about Ma-or Sue Ann, the actual name of Spencer's character. EDIT
Posted May 30, 2019
Bolden (2019) Nadine Matthews It's a film that is simultaneously beautiful and disturbing to watch. EDIT
Posted May 6, 2019
Apollo 11 (2019) Aramide Tinubu The Apollo is sprinkled with gems. Williams places his film within the context of Black history in this country while providing anecdotes about the theater itself. EDIT
Posted May 1, 2019
What's My Name: Muhammad Ali (2019) Aramide Tinubu What's My Name showcases Ali's gorgeous arrogance. EDIT
Posted Apr 29, 2019
The Burial of Kojo (2018) Kathleen Anaza The sonic achievement and innovative cinematography coupled with the Afrofuturistic tale of the power of a young girl's love make The Burial of Kojo an undeniably decadent and refreshing transformation of African cinema. EDIT
Posted Apr 29, 2019
() Aramide Tinubu Chronicling three centuries Boss: The Black Experience in Business acts as a zippy history lesson. EDIT
Posted Apr 24, 2019
Fast Color (2018) Monique Jones Often, we see the meme-like statement "Trust Black women" espoused on social media. However, as Fast Color proves, trusting Black women means empowering them and believing in their abilities to make the world a better place. EDIT
Posted Apr 18, 2019
Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé (2019) Brooke Obie It's a reminder that the standard of excellence-for Coachella performances, for visual albums, for global influence-is a Black woman who is Black as hell and she loves it. And she loves us too! EDIT
Posted Apr 18, 2019
Little (2019) Clarkisha Kent Little ends up being the little (ha!) film that could and injects itself with enough heart and humor to keep you curious and intrigued for its entire runtime. EDIT
Posted Apr 16, 2019
The Best of Enemies (2019) Brooke Obie To give ally cookies to a former Klan president because he no longer believes Black people are "evil and dirty" is breathtaking. To reduce Ann's story to her friendship with this man as "a more important story," is even more so. EDIT
Posted Apr 10, 2019
Amazing Grace (2018) Aramide Tinubu Amazing Grace might not be the movie that Aretha Franklin expected, but it's the film that music lovers, believers, and everyone else desperately needs to see. EDIT
Posted Apr 3, 2019
Us (2019) Trey Mangum With his second feature, Peele completely obliterates the concept of a sophomore slump, debuting what will go down as the first true, soon-to-be-iconic horror classic that we've seen in many, many years. EDIT
Posted Mar 28, 2019
Captain Marvel (2019) Monique Jones Captain Marvel is a film you should be proud to let your children watch. It will inspire them to understand there should be no limits on what women can achieve EDIT
Posted Mar 13, 2019
Juanita (2019) Nadine Matthews Mothers in American cinema are either deified or demonized," something Juanita successfully avoids doing. EDIT
Posted Mar 13, 2019
Don't Let Go (2019) Trey Mangum Despite spirited performances from several of its cast members, the promising sci-fi thriller falls flat. EDIT
Posted Feb 14, 2019
Luce (2019) Trey Mangum Luce, a film so sharp with tension that you might develop paper cuts just watching it. EDIT
Posted Feb 5, 2019