Lovers Rock

Lovers Rock ★★★★½

Just over halfway into Lovers Rock at a party where the music has been bursting through the sound systems for much of the runtime, the DJ stops the music and lets the crowd vibe out a cappella. They’re singing the 1979 Janet Kay track, ‘Silly Games’. Shabier Kirchner’s camera weaves through the crowd, as we watch each member of the party gyrating and singing along. Jacqueline Durran’s costumes hug each member of the crowd. The shadows and light fall on the bodies, exuberant in joy and it seems as if the party is moving in slow motion. It’s not, though. But the sheer exuberant joy of the moment feels intoxicating and immediately redolent. As the entire room sings out the lyrics, it is as if they don’t want to stop singing. They don’t want this moment of communal joy to end. And neither do we. Lovers Rock is an intoxicating and irresistible burst of black joy on screen.

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