If Beale Street Could Talk (PG) *** – By Shirl Hollenberg

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Photo: KiKi Lane as Tish and Stephan James as Fonny in Barry Jenkins’ If Beale Street Could Talk, an Entertainment One release. Credit: Tatum Mingus.

Railroaded!

Young love like no other gets put through the hoops in if Beale Street Could Talk. Taken from the popular James Baldwin story this EOne Entertainment release is making waves at most likely Vancouver’s Fifth Avenue Cinemas.

Annapurna Pictures serves up a delightful three hanky tale of two young lovers trying to cope with life in the inner city – Harlem to be precise. Things get heady when the girl gets pregnant while the beau to be gets sent to jail. Elements of racism and prejudice boil to the surface as tempers rise.

How far the bride to be will stand by her man in what appears to be a lost cause will leave audiences shaking their heads in Either disbelief or disgust as it looks like the fix is in. A soulful soundtrack that fits the characters to a tee makes If Beale Street Could Talk a terrific little heartfelt movie with people we can surely relate to. A superb and subtle atmosphere created by director Barry Jenkins that e pliers the ugly seeds of prejudice in a host of ways is sure to get people thinking. Being railroaded never felt so wrong.