Passing

Another film that I am catching up on for the 2021 year is on Netflix and it featured Tessa Thompson and Ruth Negga in a period piece.

Thompson and Negga play old high school friends who have come back together. Both women are light skinned African American, but Thompson is married to a black doctor and Negga is pretending to be a white woman and she is married to a wealthy racist white man.

Once they meet back up, they become involved in each other’s life. Ruth Negga inserts herself into Thompson’s world in part because she missed the black culture that she had given up to pass as a white woman.

During this time, the strikingly beautiful Negga began to become close with Thompson’s husband (André Holland) and Thompson started to feel jealous as he began displaying tendencies that made Thompson suspicious and uneasy.

The performances in Passing are strong and the story flows pretty well. It is an intriguing concept that I did not know ever occurred. The film creates beautiful imagery as it is filmed in black and white, making Negga look even more like she was white. That helped create an illusion about the skin color of Ruth Negga, and her blonde hair made it all the mosre.

The ideas of the differences in race is very apparent in the movie, as the behavior of the different characters displays their feelings. Holland wants to inform his children about the dangers of living in Harlem, but Thompson wants them to stay children longer. These conversations are happening yet today in black homes and it is hard to grasp if you are white skinned.

This is a well done film that moves rapidly and has a sudden shock in the third act that will blow your mind.

3.75 stars

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