Pariah

Illuminated by warm orange and pink lights, Dee Rees’ Pariah (2011) is an emotionally raw coming-of-age film about a queer Black teenager named Alike (Adepero Oduye), who comes from a conservative, dysfunctional family living in Brooklyn. Rees (best known for her work in Mudbound), the movie’s director-writer, takes us on Alike’s journey. She divides the film between […]

Mudbound

Dee Ree’s Mudbound consists of nuanced ambiguities that make it a force of moral clarity. It confronts the ugly truths of racism—lynchings, heinous verbal abuse, forced poverty—while also gesturing at the precarious, but very possible nature of hope. I can think of so many examples in pop culture where ostensibly progressive works serve to uphold the […]