Widows: Review by Kush Hayes
When I first saw the trailer for Widows back in June of 2018, I thought this looked a lot like another movie from 1996 called Set It Off. Well, I was half right, this in fact is not a remake of the mid 90s Queen Latifah heist movie, but it is a remake of a UK property by the same name: Widows.
Without that much knowledge of anything, I enjoyed the story presented before us. I enjoyed seeing this side drama of two families trying to keep control of a neighborhood though civics and politics. I enjoyed how that weaved into our main drama of a heist gone wrong leaving behind four widows.
To be fair, the other three widows wouldnt even be involved in the plot had Viola Davis character hadnt gone out of her way to find these other women she never knew period. Brian Tyree Henry who you know from FXs Atlanta, is the driving motivation for Davis character and the other Widows to make their heist. And while hes an intimidating presence, its his brother played by Get Out and Black Panthers Daniel Kaluuya who is an absolute intense and terrifying force of nature and aside of something horrible, you never know what he is going to do next.
While I never feel the 2hr 10min run time on this, it is dry and takes its time moving along. I would come to find out that the original Widows from 1983 was a BBC 6 part mini-series and that makes everything come into focus for me. This gets a sequel mini-series two years later and then another four part mini-series in 2002. These previous editions had time to breath and format the story it was trying to tell whereas this runs right through everything to the point where our fem-foursome are only going over details of their heist 3 days before the execution.
Academy award nominated director Steve McQueen has a lot of fun camera placements telling the story that he himself says before the start of our presentation was a passion project for him. He also gets the best performances from his cast despite how fast things move in these mean streets of Chicago. I have to believe Mr McQueen has a four hour cut of this in his Amsterdam residence.
The best performances again come from Daniel Kaluuya and Colin Farrell even though in hindsight are minor characters and minor details to our overall story. Yet when these two are on screen, together or apart, theyre making the most interesting choices in the scene.
Theres already Oscar talk being created for this movie. And to be fair when you go down the cast list, I get it. But I dont think its strong enough to even get a nomination for anything this early in the game even with its audience gasping twist. This will be great on Netflix.
Three out of Six Blueberries