A visionary immersion into Jamaican life, and, as its title implies, the lives of its women, Khalik Allah’s bracing, hypnotic documentary comes to light in a rush of imagery that conjures both the mythic and the matter-of-fact. These scenes are captured with sometimes overpowering intimacy in the raw grain of 8 and 16mm film, as well as video and still camera images, which the filmmaker, who has family roots on the Caribbean island, has been shooting since his adolescence.
As poetic, abstract and fiery as a free-jazz horn solo, and as epic as life itself, Black Mother is a bold expression in sight and sound that speaks its own cinematic patois. “In exploring the country, encountering its people, discovering its landscapes, revealing its historical and spiritual overtones, Allah also questions his own consciousness and sense of identity,” writes Richard Brody in The New Yorker. “Moment by moment, Black Mother plunges the viewer into a universe that’s as much an individual creation, a reflection of subjective imagination, as it is a depiction of a place; it’s as much a tracing of the historical and political forces that converge in Jamaica as it is a passionate revelation of its residents and its ways of life.”
Filmmaker Khalik Allah is expected to be present at the screening for a post-film discussion.
Sunday, April 7 at 7:15pm at FSU Student Life Cinema
About the Filmmaker
Khalik Allah (b.1985) is a New York-based photographer and filmmaker whose work has been described as “street opera” – simultaneously visceral, hauntingly beautiful and penetrative. His passion for photography began when he photographed members of the Wu-Tang Clan with a camera he borrowed from his dad. While the people he photographs on the corner of 125th and Lexington Avenue in Harlem have been his central inspiration, his work also extends to documentary film with Field Niggas, a chronicle of summer of nights spent at the intersection of 125th Street and Lexington Avenue. The film takes its name from Malcolm X’s famous lecture, “Message to the Grassroots.”