Film: American Son

Opened: November 1, 2019

Directed by: Kenny Leon

Starring: Kerry Washington, Steven Pasquale, Jeremy Jordan & Eugene Lee

Despite a relevant storyline with fantastic performances, American Son suffers from a predictable script the forces conversations.

Kendra Ellis-Connor (Kerry Washington) and her estranged husband Scott (Steven Pasquale) wait in a Miami police station to get information about their missing son. Officer Paul Larkin (Jeremy Jordan) doesn’t know much and insists that they wait for Lieutenant John Stokes (Eugene Lee) for more.

A direct adaptation from the Broadway play of the same name with the same cast, American Son keeps the drama in a central location, which works onstage, but feels odd on film. Though it does allow the character’s tensions to remain strong.

However, Christopher Demos-Brown’s script constantly sets up the characters to fail and an educational conversation to start. It doesn’t feel natural and it gets old quickly.

Final say: Important race conversations are amiss. ★★☆☆☆

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