Directed by Denzel Washington & Written by August Wilson
Starring Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Stephen M. Henderson, Jovan Adepo, Russell Hornsby, and Mykelti Williamson
A black man has dreams that are ignored by a cold and more often than not, racist society. He carries his pain home and inflicts his agony on his family, eventually seeking solace in the bed of a younger woman, whom he impregnates and in the process, nearly destroys his wife, his younger son and his long-standing relationships with others. He wants to win something that he dreamt of winning. This is the best he can do.
“Good” black women know this dance, spend lifetimes trying to assuage the pain of their men (a fool’s errand) and trying to not be destroyed in the process. This, my dears, is what racism is really about: destroying people, trampling on dreams, cutting out hearts AND DEMANDING THAT WE BE OK WITH IT. We’re not. It’s a sorry state of affairs. We walk on tight ropes. And every character in “Fences” is on a tight rope.
August Wilson grabbed it from the inside out… we are all inside Denzel’s Troy.. his lost dreams, his belief that he was due something better.. But the dark side of this is his inability to grab onto the good that he has and swing with it. He digs a deeper cellar for himself, his heart is so broken about what he has NOT done, not been allowed to do. We all know this story. Our grandfathers, our fathers, our men to this day struggle to find some place in the sun, some place that builds them up rather than tearing them down. We walk on tight ropes. We fall. But that’s the point, isn’t it? That we fall.
(Now, you know I love Denzel. Love Viola. But I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for the amazing talents of Mykelti Williamson. I loved him in “Heat,” as the languid slow talking/walking detective working with Al Pacino. And who could forget “Forrest Gump?” And, on and on. He is a marvel to watch.)
I hope you will support this film. And “Loving,” too. Good stuff. Fine work. Our lives, our journey, our very own Post Traumatic Stress Disorder on full display. There’s no doubt in my mind that we ALL suffer from a PTSD and why would we not? Take a look.