Lovers Rock

Lovers Rock ★★★

Lovers Rock, the second of the Steve McQueen Small Axe series, is rather unlike most of his films. The relative plotlessness won't be unfamiliar to fans of Hunger, but the dedication to warm, fuzzy, dare I say, escapist atmosphere is truly unique among his filmography. I have joked in the past McQueen is an excellent "misery merchant," a filmmaker most known for and most excellent at capturing humanity at its most raw and brutal. Such was certainly the case with Mangrove, but here the warm communal connections aren't beset by the harsh outside world. The (relative) lack of external conflict is an interesting and welcome change of pace, but the character drama which replaces it is, sadly, a bit one note. Otherwise, it's a great vibe with sweet tunes and a lot of affection, contention and compassion to spare. Lovers rock, indeed.

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