Rocks (Dir. Sarah Gavron, 2020)
Young, Multicultural and Abandoned
Growing up, adulthood creeps up on all of us slowly and we start to realise how much our parents/carers did for us. Rocks, our main character, does not have this luxury of approaching adulthood slowly. Adulthood arrives at her doorstep in the form of a letter for her mother, telling her to look after her little brother, Emmaulae, and that she will be back soon. We quickly start to comprehend that soon does not mean a shopping trip to the nearest local.
We follow Rocks as she tries to look after her brother to the best of her ability and still be a teenager. Her adolescence accompanied by a beautiful soundtrack, including Dave’s Location and Energy by Wiz Kid ft Skepta.
The documentary style cinematography, with handheld camera work and phone shots that bring the subject closer to home, create a realistic feel as if you are watching this whole story unfold in front of your eyes, though at times can be disorienting and doesn't add any value to the already rich plot. The colours keep to a warmer tone throughout the film, illustrating London in the summer with a nice contrast between the subject of the film and the visuals on display.
I am giving this film a 4/5 for it’s handling of the sensitive subject matter and portrayal of inner-city London. It was amazing to see such a diverse cast within a movie not revolving around diversity. It showed me the city I saw growing up, from the council estate to the secondary school, it was important to see all that on the big screen portrayed realistically.
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