Title: Night Comes On
Director: Jordana Spiro
Starring: Dominique Fishback, Tatum Marilyn Hall, Natashia Fuller
Runtime: 1 hr 30 mins
What It Is: In this drama, Angel LaMere (Fishback) is nearing her 18th birthday, is released from juvenile detention, and is planning for a deadly redemption for the death of her mother (Fuller) by the hands of her father (Jelks). On the way, she takes her younger sister, Abby (Hall), out to the beach.
What We Think: What’s to be appreciated about this is its ability to deliver a kindly realism to a perspective we don’t often get to view in a film. We’re able to follow our character, a sympathetic teen forced into adulthood very early in her life, as she returns to a society apathetic to her return or well-being. On that note, I’m incredibly pleased with the film’s portrayal of “the system”—the justice system, rather. It’s an interesting and naturalistic take on inner-city life and having to cope with people we’ve lost, the people that have hurt us, and the decisions we make. The movie has its moments in which it the mise en scene comes together quite meaningfully. There’s a nice track in the score composed of dancing notes on a piano that lends melancholy. The acting is overall delivered successfully (Fishback has a silent yet layered performance) and serves the writing well. Later on in the film, the pacing slows and story events feel a little less memorable and a little more sparse (as if it’s been done before, which in some ways, they have), but otherwise, this is a lovely little sort of coming-of-age.
Our Grade: C, A film about coping and even duality (making me think of what makes a killer or what makes a caretaker), the film makes for an overall lovely debut in feature filmmaking of which to some may be forgettable, but is something I commend Spiro for making, and am looking forward to any future projects she will be taking charge of.