Queen & Slim arrived mid-Fall and it played well for some. However, many viewers were quick to call it propaganda or slam the rather soapbox storytelling. I was the idiot sitting in the theater wondering who did I please to get an African American powered remake of Wisdom. After talking about that point after the film ended, I realized how many people never saw Wisdom. Things like this are why Paramount is pissing me off by slacking on their catalog release responsibilities.
Wisdom and Queen & Slim are both movies about young people caught in a bad place with the local police. The main difference is that Emilio Estevez in Wisdom helped start his own trouble. Queen & Slim features upward urban professionals that spend the rest of the film as victims of never-ending system cruelty. It’s sad, but there is enough that keeps irritating me about the movie.
That point is also made me want to stop comparing Queen & Slim to Wisdom. Wisdom was a daydream fantasy that existed in the mind of the main characters. This film dwells in how one major wrong decision can cause a world to crash down. Emilio Estevez was never going to pay for his actions in Wisdom. However, misreading a situation in Queen & Slim ultimately ends in a brutal finale.
Road trip crime movies usually end one way. The misunderstood people end up dead. It doesn’t matter if they committed a crime or not. When you challenge understood justice and concrete systems, narrative storytelling requires payment. In death, you can become an icon. The problem is you have to kick the bucket.
Queen & Slim is so stark at points that I wish it could have had a moment of brevity. But, that’s what happens when you throw down hard on a serious subject. You can’t take your foot off the gas for a moment. When you do, it’s a rushed sex scene that felt real while seeming so fake. Movie magic, people!
The Blu-ray comes with featurettes and a commentary as the special features. The A/V Quality is quite sharp with a stunning 2.39:1 transfer. Just check out those screenshots. The Atmos track was booming a lot more than I expected. If you dig this kind of movie, then check out Queen & Slim.