American Skin Review Written By B. Gunn
There’s this phrase called “The Talk” and it’s given by white parents and black parents, among other races. However, “The Talk” has different meanings in those two households. When white parents have “The Talk”, it’s normally about the birds and the bees. Not only do black parents discuss the birds and the bees, unfortunately, this sit-down involves the badges and the bullets. Giving “The Talk” to black teenagers is as essential as it is learning to read. It is a set of rules on how to govern oneself when pulled over by police – a survival tactic. In the new movie American Skin, Nate Parker and law enforcement must deal with the consequences when “The Talk” falls on deaf ears.
After a four-year hiatus, Nate Parker makes his triumphant return as writer, director, and lead actor in the film American Skin. The film also stars Omari Hardwick, Shane Paul McGhie, Sierra Capri, and Beau Knapp. Parker plays Lincoln Jefferson, a marine veteran who is pulled over with his son by police. An incident occurs, and when justice eludes Jefferson and his family, he finds a way to hold his own court.
American Skin is a tale of continuous injustice and what could happen when the marginalized are pushed to their limits. Its rawness is a microcosm of the relationship between police and minorities across America.
The opening scene – dramatic dashcam footage of the traffic stop – sets the stage for an emotionally charged, marvelous feat. Parker gives an outstanding performance as a father left with no options. How is one supposed to react when the wheels of justice are flat tires when it comes to minorities? Lincoln Jefferson’s response is how, and no matter how extreme it may seem, it sure is entertaining to watch.
All actors shine in this movie. Every performer has a purpose. Whether it be a full monologue or two words, no talent is wasted. A chain is as strong as its weakest link, and this chain of talent is adamantium strong!
What also makes Skin so enthralling is the writing. It isn’t one-sided. During a heated, and I mean a level-ten HEATED scene, both sides engage in such real, unadulterated dialogue. The conversations are tough but necessary. As an audience, we walk in the shoes of all involved. Those shoes are tight at times, but you must not take them off. Walk it out!
American Skin is one of those films that was meant to happen. It’s as if 2020 decided to make a visual journal of what took place in terms of the racial injustice and sent it to Parker and the production crew to put the finishing touches on it.
This is super emotional and bound to evoke a shyt load of feelings. All three acts connect to form a cinematic Voltron.
I’m co-signing American Skin to the fullest and I implore to check this out! For some odd reason, mainstream critics are bashing this film, but hey, they bashed last year’s protests, too, so the movie is doing something right.
Our American skin doesn’t crack…
Watch the trailer below:
Did you see the film? If so, what are your thoughts?