Small Axe: Lovers Rock (2020)


Lovers Rock
Small Axe

Critics Consensus

A singular viewing experience that perfectly captures a moment in time, Lovers Rock is a lovingly-crafted ode to Black joy.



Critic Ratings: 53

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Audience Score

User Ratings: 0

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Air date: Nov 27, 2020

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Tv Season Info

Lovers Rock tells a fictional story of young love at a Blues party in 1980. The film is an ode to the romantic reggae genre called "Lovers Rock" and to the Black youth who found freedom and love in its sound in London house parties, when they were unwelcome in white nightclubs. Amarah-Jae St. Aubyn makes her screen debut opposite the BAFTAs 2020 Rising Star award recipient Micheal Ward (Top Boy). Shaniqua Okwok (Boys), Kedar Williams-Stirling (Sex Education), Ellis George (Dr. Who), Alexander James-Blake (Top Boy), and Kadeem Ramsay (Blue Story) also star, as well as Francis Lovehall and Daniel Francis-Swaby who make their screen debuts. Lovers Rock was co-written by Courttia Newland and Steve McQueen.

Critic Reviews for Small Axe Lovers Rock

All Critics (53) | Top Critics (13)

We don't need clunky exposition to introduce us to a dozen or so principal characters when Gary Davy has cast such singularly memorable faces, and Lisa Duncan has designed such distinctive costumes.

Sep 18, 2020 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Despite its brief 68-minute runtime, Lovers Rock is loaded with tactile, sensuous storytelling.

Sep 18, 2020 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

Regardless of the big picture, however, "Lovers Rock" is a fast, loose statement of its own - a galvanizing salute to finding freedom from the system by living in the moment.

Sep 18, 2020 | Rating: A- | Full Review…
Top Critic

As in an Andy Warhol movie, plot is superfluous. But where Warhol celebrates inertia, McQueen's all about drive.

Oct 25, 2020 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

It's a beautiful little gem of a film, an illustration of a hyper-specific time, place, and culture that is simultaneously universal in the feelings it evokes in the viewer.

Oct 21, 2020 | Full Review…

You can absolutely feel the ebb and flow of the evening and the relentless potential for anything to happen, good or bad.

Oct 21, 2020 | Full Review…

Although made for TV, Lovers Rock represents 68 minutes of absolutely sensational cinema.

Oct 20, 2020 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Lovers Rock is loud, proud and joyous. It's an invigorating, pound-the-walls-and-floorboards ode to its titular style of reggae.

Oct 19, 2020 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Lovers Rock is the kind of immersive, sensual experience that only cinema can provide. McQueen puts a microscope over a simple Saturday night and proves that in the right hands, it can hold the world.

Oct 19, 2020 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Lovers Rock brilliantly recreates Black British history while failing to imbue its night out with any sense of urgency.

Oct 19, 2020 | Rating: 6/10 | Full Review…

Steve McQueen's Lovers Rock is a vibe - an energetic mood board of culture and music wrapped up in the euphoria of Black joy and love.

Oct 19, 2020 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Lovers Rock is an odyssey inside a sensual, soulful, and romantic house party that only further cements Sir Steve McQueen as a titan of British cinema.

Oct 18, 2020 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Small Axe: Lovers Rock

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