Wednesday, October 17, 2012


Emayatzy Corinealdi

Earlier today I ventured into West Hollywood to see writer/director Ava DuVernay's indie film, MIDDLE OF NOWHERE.  And, boy, oh boy, am I glad I did!!!  First, let me say that I've been dyin' to see this film since the moment I watched its trailer.  I  could tell immediately that it was my kind of film.  A story about real people.  People I could know.  People I could care about and learn from.  There were no car chases, car explosions or blue people floating in air.  Just real, everyday people and the trials and tribulations of being such.

When I worked at MACY*S Herald Square in NYC, I befriended a co-worker whose husband was incarcerated.  She waited for him lovingly just as the lead character in this film did.  Eventually, however, my friend's walls were broken down and she was prepared to let another man show her the affection her husband couldn't.  As fate would have it, I was that "other" man.  When I realized her feelings for me were more than they should have been, I cooled things down.  I never actually discussed with her how she felt about her husband's incarceration.  I wish I had.  Well, in the film, the lead character, "Ruby," allows her walls to come tumbling down, too.  I suspect it's immeasurably difficult to remain faithful to someone who isn't faithful to you.

Middle Of Nowhere is truly an important piece of cinema for black writers, directors and actors in Hollywood; because it illustrates a kind of storytelling, in a predominantly black film, that is rarer than black folks in pro hockey.  The film moved at an easy, yet steady pace.  I liked that.  It allowed me ample time to feel that I actually knew these people.  And that I wanted the best for them.  The lead actress, EMAYATZY CORINEALDI, who portrayed, "Ruby," was a diamond among jagged rocks.  Her soft, serene voice and inarguable beauty are enough to make me want to see the film again.  Her calm, understated performance is proof positive that anger, disappointment and utter heartbreak don't need to be loud or strident.  Even when her character never said a word, her face spoke volumes.  That, folks, is called A-C-T-I-N-G!  I hope and pray we hear tons and tons more from Emayatzy.  A talent like hers MUST be treasured by the masses.   

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