by Emmanuel Akitobi
November 20, 2011 6:13 PM 77 Comments
I woke up early this morning and did my usual web surfing before I had to head out, just like I do most Sunday mornings. Still somewhat sleepy, I wasn't looking for anything in particular; just something entertaining enough to provide a slight jolt of energy. What I actually found (on WorldStarHipHop.com, of all places--shout out to them), writer/director Ari Aster'sThe Strange Thing About The Johnsons, woke me the hell up.
From what I've been able to gather, this film has traveled the festival circuit for a while now, so it may be old news to some readers. But if you're like me, and this is brand new to you, I promise you that you're in for a somewhat uncomfortable, yet thrilling piece of cinematic mastery. Billy Mayo, Angela Bullock, Brandon Greenhouse, Carlon Jeffery, and Daniele Watts all give impressive performances in the film's lead roles.
Without giving away too much of the short film's story, I'll say that The Strange Thing About The Johnsons deals with an undoubtedly, mostly unheard-of dynamic of contemporary-family life.
Neither the writer/director, nor the creative team behind the film, are black (from what I can tell), but it has an all-black cast. What's significant about that, you might ask? Well, unlike films of a similar artistic and creative make-up that have come before The Strange Thing About The Johnsons, this one doesn't have any racial dynamics in its plot. This is color-blind casting at its finest, if you ask me.
Take a look at the trailer for The Strange Thing About The Johnsons before watching the film. Then watch the film to see if its story turns out to be what you thought it would be.
UPDATE: S&A contacted the director, Ari Aster, and he answered a few of the question many readers had after watching The Strange Thing About The Johnsons. Read his response HERE.