Fences

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Last night, while leaving a screening of the solid and engaging adaptation of August Wilson’s play Fences, which was directed by Denzel Washington, a man walking behind me said to the woman walking next to him that this is not the kind of Denzel film he likes. It’s too act-y, it’s all about the Academy Awards. Clearly, he wanted Washington to shoot more and talk less, but Fences has no guns and a whole lot of talking about life; it deals with failed dreams, race relations in mid-century America, marital problems, parenting problems, working-class problems, drinking problems, problems with debts, with mental health, and, ultimately, with death. What might kill the character Washington plays in Fences is not a car chase or a shootout, but blocked arteries. The man behind me was correct; it is likely Washington will be recognized by the Academy for this performance. And thank God! It is good to see a great actor take a break from his fall into the abyss of crap and produce something of social, artistic, and cultural value. by Charles Mudede
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Credits
Director
Denzel Washington
Cast
Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Stephen McKinley Henderson