Listen, I’m not here to talk shit about Netflix’s new movie, All Day and a Night! That’s not what this is about. Cause I’m still happy I watched this movie! When I started taking my writing seriously last year, I decided that I’d also review more black films. So I’m not here to bash, I’m just here to give you my review of All Day and a Night so you know what’s up before you turn it on. So that’s what I’m gonna do!
All Day And A Night Review
Beware! The scenes in this new Netflix movie are either extremely violent or just plain boring.
There’s no in-between. It’s either one extreme or the other. Which I think is super crazy. At one point I found myself relieved when the violence was finally over, but then completely bored because it was just slowly chugging along. Ugh!
And the violence is just … omg!
Like there’s a scene where the dad beats his kid and it’s just SO damn hard to watch and not cringe or try to hit fast forward. (Think slavery lashes!) And don’t even get me started on that damn arrest scene! GOODNESS!
Oh, and then there’s the scene where someone gets shot, and they just keep shooting and shooting. Like why? I never got why people would do that, unless the character was trigger happy or angry, which didn’t apply to either of them in this movie. Sigh! Like we know they dead! You can stop now!
No? Oh, okay, keep shooting I guess, whatever. Lol
All Day and a Night is a bit triggering. If not more than Queen and Slim.
I mean, with Queen and Slim, you kind of expected the bullshit. But with All Day and a Night, it was like a slap in the face.
Honestly, I think the only reason I got through it was that I knew I was technically watching it for work, so it didn’t really bother me much. But right now this isn’t something to watch with everything going on in the world. And honestly, it’s not even that GREAT for me to pressure folks to see it at this time!
If it was Queen and Slim great I’d be like, watch it. But it’s not. Lol It was nice to see another Black story from a Black writer, but this ain’t the time for this. Circle back ’round to this during the holiday season when you’re a bit happier. Lol
Cause seriously, not everyone is happy enough to be able to bounce back after watching this, so if ‘Queen and Slim‘ was hard to watch for you, this may not be for you either! And that’s totally okay. Prioritize your peace of mind right now.
Cause despite this being a Black story, starring Black actors, written (and directed) by a Black writer and director aka Joe Robert Cole – who also worked on Black Panther, that lovely fact doesn’t just erase the brutality in All Day and a Night.
And the topics showcased in this movie: bullying, Black men in jail, child abuse (aka ass whoopings), drugs, peer pressure, etc. doesn’t make this film easy to watch.
But in a nutshell, this movie is about survival.
And it’s a gritty, hard pill to swallow.
Not only does All Day and a Night show us what it’s like when you abusive your kid in an “attempt” to make them better.
And how that abuse can make our kids grow into abusive adults themselves. Because just like alcoholism can be passed on from parent to child, so can violence.
It also shows us that as Black people, we can do EVERYTHING right and STILL not make it! Cause sometimes, when you’re Black, it doesn’t matter WHAT you do! Sometimes you just have to make do with the cards you’ve been dealt.
And it reminds us that you can’t stay mad at the world forever! At some point, you have to take responsibility for your actions, let go of the anger and change, or you’ll miss your one shot at greatness.
But can we talk about how he ends up in jail with his dad for a second? Who then tries to help him survive in jail? Like this is what’s wrong with the world today!
You couldn’t f*cking help him survive when he WASN’T in jail, so he didn’t end up in jail? TF! You think that’s what you were doing whooping his ass all them times? And punching him so damn hard that he loses his breath in an attempt to stop him from crying? All you did was teach him how to beat on others!
Now he’s in jail, you’re tryna help him navigate? Sigh.
But as Jah said, “Slavery taught black people how to survive but not how to live and that’s what we passed on to each other.” It’s a hard pill to swallow, but it’s the truth.
If all you’ve ever had to do was survive, then that’s all you KNOW! Some people can’t see anything else. His dad was always in survival mode, henceforth why he couldn’t teach him anything else.
All Day and a Night was good, but it wasn’t great.
It was authentic, but it wasn’t exciting to watch. It didn’t evoke a whole lot of emotion in me except disgust for how violent people are and how fragile the male ego is! Hell, Outer Banks was more intense than this!
I expected Queen and Slim greatness from this movie, or even the excitement from Charm City Kings (which still hasn’t been released yet sadly) but I guess that’s why All Day and a Night is on Netflix and not in theaters right?
The storyline moves like molasses. Slow AF! A whole hour passed and I still felt like I knew absolutely nothing. I was about as frustrated as Malcolm’s mother when she was in court asking why did Jah killed him! LOL And there were times where I was super bored, even though I didn’t want to admit that to myself. Lol
But there were a few things that I absolutely loved …
The bike scene
I loved the scene where Jah was riding his bike and you can just tell he’s angry as hell, but then he merges with a few little kids also riding their bikes, and there was just this calm feeling that washed over me. It was great!
And as soon as he turned the corner, I could feel the anger again.
The backgammon scene
Like, niggas was REALLY gangster but still chilling in the crib playing backgammon son! Lol If that ain’t one of the blackest scenes I’ve ever seen in a movie!
It reminds me of The Photograph and how they danced to Jazz music. Because it made me think about how versatile Black people are. Like we may be hood AF, but we can still play chess and shit. I haven’t played backgammon in years though. Lol
When Jah said Shantaye …
Didn’t talk to him for 2 whole weeks because he messed up her name. Lol
He called her Shantelle instead of Shantaye. And he said she was like … if it was important enough you woulda remembered!
Listennnnn! That was easily the best part of this movie! Lol YES SIS! Tell um! Cause if he gave a F*CK he’d remember anyhow he needed to!
Write it down, repeat it 5x, whatever you gotta do! Shit!
But it was also such a strong moment for her as a woman to show other women that (1) they need to make EVERYONE put some respect on their name and (2) don’t fall for dudes who can’t even do the bare minimum, like remembering yo damn name.
How you can just tell a Black person wrote this
The same way I said in my review for What Men Want that you could tell a white man wrote and directed it. Is the same way I’ll say in this review that you can just TELL a Black person wrote this. Like seriously. And I love it!
The ‘gunshots’ sound effects
I literally jumped out of my damn bed at the beginning of this movie because of how hard those sound effects hit! Like jeezus! I sure as hell turned my volume down a bit after that first shot. Lo But they were very effective.
The gospel music in the first scene
Well, what I should say is that I liked the irony of the gospel music playing in that first scene. Cause you just know he’s about to go do some shit he probably shouldn’t, yet you hear gospel playing instead of the normal gritty, hip hop music one would use for a scene like that. I loved that!
Jah teaching his dad how to garden
Even though his dad didn’t teach him much of anything useful growing up, Jah still took the time to show his dad something that wasn’t violent, or drug affiliated.
It’s subtle, and a very short scene, but I love what it represented – the growth in Jah, as he became a better person, despite everything that happened.
Jah letting go of his anger and finally doing right by his son
I won’t say how he did this, and what it was that happened, but I will say I’m super glad he grew as a person and finally began to let go of his anger.
Once he finally let it go, it allowed him to think clearly, which meant he could finally do right for his son. Those last few moments in the movie felt like everything!
FYI – If you started this movie and never finished it … yes, they tell us why Jah did what he did.
It took a long ass time for them to finally get to what really happened and how he got there. (Henceforth why I said this movie moved so damn slow.)
But they did tell us. And it’s not even what you think! As I said, this movie is about survival, so that’s basically the motive behind this homicide.
Overall, I’m glad I watched All Day and a Night on Netflix, but it’s not for everyone.
At least ‘Coffee and Kareem‘ was funny, despite the cursing. There wasn’t an ounce of humor in this to balance out the violence. Not that I’m saying there needed to be humor! Cause this wasn’t a comedy, and there wasn’t any room for it.
But unlike Coffee and Kareem, which had humor in it, to balance out the bad, this was just all violence without anything to balance it out really. Even the good moments I mention above weren’t big enough to wash away the violent scenes.
Also, this isn’t something I’d wanna watch over and over again. But I can appreciate it for what it was. And I’m still grateful I got to see another Black film this year, even if it doesn’t measure up well to the others. I’m rooting for everybody Black!
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