Judas and the Black Messiah

Judas and the Black Messiah

Engaged in a weird tug of war with its own mythologizing tendencies and with Hollywood convention, ending up in an unsatisfying no-man's-land. Focuses on O'Neal to the detriment of giving wider context to the Panthers' struggle but muddies the effect that such a narrow focus could have by bringing in Hampton as a second POV character, ultimately failing to convey the inner lives of either man. It's legitimate to leave historical characters at a bit of a distance, sometimes this is the wisest choice for the material, but the missing sense of scale and perspective that could have made for an engaging film from several angles here results in a muted, confused narrative. Probably would look a lot more intelligent as mainstream historical and political filmmaking if Mangrove hadn't come out three months ago.