Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Now, facing pressure from all sides of the community, Starr must find her voice and stand up for what's right.
Set in contemporary Chicago, amid a time of turmoil, four women with nothing in common except a debt left behind by their dead husbands' criminal activities, take fate into their own hands, and conspire to forge a future on their own terms.
Early 1970s. Four strangers check in at the El Royale Hotel. The hotel is deserted, staffed by a single desk clerk. Some of the new guests' reasons for being there are less than innocent and some are not who they appear to be.
Starr Carter is constantly switching between two worlds: the poor, mostly black, neighborhood where she lives and the rich, mostly white, prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Now, facing pressures from all sides of the community, Starr must find her voice and stand up for what's right.Written by
Twentieth Century Fox
For the role of Carlos, Starr's uncle, the filmmakers appealed to Common, famous rapper who also has many cinematographic performances to his credit. See more »
When driving in King's car there is a clock visible on the dash when King looks back to Starr. The time varies each time the clock is seen, with minutes passing when 1 sentence is spoken, and then the last sentence happens 10 minutes before the last but one sentence. See more »
As a white guy who's spent all of his life in England, it's hard for me to relate to most of the issues raised in this movie. However I feel the actors did a fantastic job of helping me see from the characters perspective, in what is undoubtedly tricky subject matter.
I found Russell Hornsby's portrayal of a father who's lead a colourful life, leaving it behind to concentrate on raising his children in what he sees as the right way, particularly compelling.
Amandla Stenberg was fantastic in the lead role. A teenager struggling to deal with the loss of a friend, and the injustice that follows. The feeling of barely contained rage was palpable in some scenes.
There is strong theme of societal injustice throughout the movie. The blame isn't placed squarely at the door of "white America" as some have suggested. The film doesn't shy away from gang & drug problems that plague communities across America & the wider world.
I feel like its a shame, that one of the few scenes that detract from my overall enjoyment of this movie, was the films most pivotal scene. I felt no real sense of injustice attached to this. If I was pulled over by a cop in the US, I'm doing exactly what he/she tells me. Instead the character Khalil (Algee Smith) decides it's the right time to have some fun with his friend Starr (Stenberg). This leads to his death, and while racial profiling certainly had a part to play in the incident, the actions of Khalil ultimately were what lead to his demise. Perhaps the way I view this scene says more about my place in society, or society as a whole, but it's hard for me to see it any other way.
It's interesting that later in the film, a scene between Starr & her uncle Carlos (portrayed by Common) gives us some insight into what would have been going through the cops head as he carried out the traffic stop.
Overall I thought it was a good movie with some emotional & tense scenes, acted very well & is definitely one to watch.
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