You want a one-way ticket to Cinemavenger's shit list? Cock punch me and call it a blowjob. Promise me ice cream and serve me fro-yo. Tell me we're going on an epic hookers and blow, whiskey and smack, kink and crime bender . . . and then spring an intervention on me. Again.
Fucking lie to me - or to pretty much anyone - and whatever good will you might've had goes out the window faster than a stockbroker on October 26, 1929. It's a simple, primal fact of human existence. Yet filmmakers still convince themselves that it's a good idea. Even if they do so while on an epic hookers and blow bender, it's still a dick move. Case in point, Antebellum.
The ads for Antebellum promised a mind fuck of Dalian proportions. Somehow a successful, modern day, African American woman finds herself tossed back in time to the pre-Civil War South. Instantly, she goes from respected woman of letters to less-than-human, to property.
What an incredibly promising premise, right? Someone should make a movie about it, because Jeebus knows the fucktards behind Antebellum sure didn't. Even though their "twist" was given away before the movie was even released, consider this your SPOILER ALERT. You see, there is no time travel, interdimensional bounce aroundery, or even out of control acid trip in this waste of streaming bandwidth.
The entire movie takes place today. The famous sociologist cum equal rights crusader, Veronica Henley (Janelle "Show Me The" Monae), along with way too many other African Americans to be even remotely plausible, is kidnapped, raped, and tortured by rich white folks who want to pretend to be living in the good old slave-owning days.
What the Scarlett O'Bullshit fuck?! Antebellum's torture porn imagery is enough to turn your stomach, mostly because real white people actually committed all the unforgivably evil acts on screen on real African American people. In this country. Not terribly long ago, if you ponder on it. The modern day racism Veronica endures should have served as thought-provoking echoes of needless hatred past, present, and sadly future, but when nothing in the rest of the movie makes the first lick of sense that message gets ground up in the cotton gin.
Antebellum is a war crime.
November 13, 2020