Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Experience and Review of I Will Follow

The first time I heard of this movie, was on the way to the AMC movie theater in Country Club Hills, IL. Driving from my house in Chicago to a theater way out in the boonies was nothing out of the ordinary. My mother and I used to venture out to that theater when we lived in Lansing, IL, but it was the first time we had to go out far to see a specific movie. It is a real shame that the AMC theaters closest to my home didn't have this movie's name upon their marquee, but it I'm glad because it has finally opened my eyes to how people treat a black independent film vs. a white independent film. 

Just last week, I told my loyal legion about going to see Jane Eyre at my local AMC theater. I was supposed to see I Will Follow, that same day, but the distances between the two theaters made me just want to go home. However, since I drug my mother to see Jane Eyre, I promised her I would see this movie. 

I honestly thought she was speaking of the movie Limitless. Then she mentioned Sallie Richardson-Whitfield promoting the film on the radio, and I realized the only thing these movies had in common was the fact that they were both movies and nothing more. 

Things weren't looking so good when we arrived to the theater and was told that movie was showing wayyyyyyy in the back of the venue, where they usually show movies that don't do so good in box office sales (I saw that God awful 10,000 B.C. in that same show room). I believe my exact word was, "Damn!", when we finally reached show room #5. I was surprised to see the crowd of people, maybe they had heard Sallie on the radio too. 

The movie started and I was intrigued. This is not a happy film. It is a movie showing people at low times of selfishness, weakness, and bitterness. I often get annoyed with movies that start off sad without any explanation, but I soon found out that this wasn't a movie that was supposed to linger on the sad elements. It's about growth. 
I will not give a synopsis of this movie, out of fear of giving the movie away. However, I will say you will like this movie. It's not a film that will come right out and say what it's about, but if the audience sticks with it from beginning to end (and understand the many U2 and other musical references) they will see what I saw: A great movie.

Last week, during my review of Jane Eyre, I cursed the creators of modern movie technology. The current trend of CGI's big budgeted movie magic has made it difficult for movies like I Will Follow (also starring Michole Briana White, Tracie Thoms, Blair Underwood, and Beverly Todd) to succeed at the box office. I also said that the former reliability of "word of mouth" was dead and gone. I was proven wrong by seeing this movie. This is a film which popularity has grown because of word of mouth, and I'm hoping to help it grow even bigger.

Trust me when I say, Great acting + Great script = Great movie.

Now that's how it's supposed to be.