REVIEW: Boogie [2021]

Love will melt the sharpest sword. As writer/director Eddie Huang‘s fortune teller states, when a dragon and a dog come together, they create a snake. That’s what Alfred ‘Boogie’ Chin (Taylor Takahashi) is: temperamental like his father (Perry Yung), culturally respectful like his mother (Pamelyn Chee), and intuitive enough to realize he’s been trapped between them without a voice of his own. Both parents see him as the answer to their financial woes, but Mr. Chin plays the long game while Mrs. Chin seeks a quick payday. Neither negates Boogie’s…

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REVIEW: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom [2020]

I got my time comin’ to me. It’s all there in the opening scene. Ma Rainey (Viola Davis) belts “Deep Moaning Blues” to a full house in Georgia as her band accompanies from the back of the stage. Toledo (Glynn Turman) and Slow Drag (Michael Potts) hit their notes with feeling, keenly watching the subtle yet damning chaos about to unfold. Not only is trumpeter Levee (Chadwick Boseman) angled to serenade young Dussie Mae (Taylour Paige)—Ma’s “girl”—while Cutler (Colman Domingo) shoots a disparaging, fatherly look of judgment, he also dares…

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