‘Strong Island’ is another film that’s compelling both for what’s on screen, and also for how perfectly timely it is with larger discussions happening in 2018 America.
Nominated this year in the Best Documentary – Feature category, the skeleton of the story is way too familiar to everyone now: a young black man is murdered, the local police look at the evidence and drift toward the attitude of ‘Well, he wasn’t an angel…’
Yance Ford (the director, the sibling of the victim, and if I’m not mistaken, the first transgender person nominated in this category) gives us enough time with all the judicial elements of the story to upset anyone with a conscience. The true gift of the film is in the time spent (and the focus) on how a crime like this, the sudden, unnecessary death of a young man, implodes the whole family unit. (There’s a larger metaphor in there for the black experience in America if you wanted to go there.)
Powerful film. Now streaming on Netflix.