top of page
  • Marah Heikkila

‘Fences’ a Spectacular Film at Questions, Reveals Our Humanity

“Fences” is a lm that truly and remarkably captures a story at its best. Given the lack of location and movement of location within the multiple scenes, the lm is far too powerful to be weighed down by that. The lm centers on Troy Maxson (played by Denzel Washington), a garbage collector, and his family.

The story takes place in Pittsburgh in the 1950s. Maxson often takes his frustrations out on the ones he loves, speci cally his wife Rose, played by Viola Davis, and his son Cory, played Jovan Adepo.

The character of Maxson had played baseball, and even though those days are gone, he still clings to then, which ultimately in uences his unpredictable state. That supports his ts of rage, and fuel them.

The performance Washington gives is truly spectacular. It is raw, and it will surely strike a chord with the viewer. It brings into view the bigger question of “what does my life

mean?”. It’s a broad question, but such a question is explored through the lm, especically in the family structure that soon starts to decay.

Maxson and son Cory go head to head many times, especially when Cory wants to play football, but his father refuses to let him, saying he must work instead. This doesn’t sit well with Cory, and this ultimately brings insight into the decaying relationship between the both of them. This is explicitly present when they both get in a ght, and Cory asks, “How come you ain’t never liked me?”, and Maxson’s response is “Like you? Who the hell said I got to like you?”. This was particularly powerful because it shows their relationship and the disconnect between the both of them.

Maxson continues to talk to Cory, stressing the fact that it isn’t about someone liking you, it is about respect, and even with the discrepancy in their relationship, it was such an interesting lesson that could be true and consid-

ered today. Another part that was extremely

emotional is when Maxson reveals that he was seeing another woman, and that the woman was pregnant. Eventu- ally, the baby of the other woman is born, and the mother dies, but Rose takes care of the child, raising her as her own. This wouldn’t be an easy thing to do, yet Rose’s actions shows that she is human, that she is far more sel ess than others.

“Fences” is captivating because of the lessons it shows. These are impor- tant lessons, and they teach us about our humanity. Such movies that do that are rare or they aren’t given enough credit, and this one is truly a gem that must be paid attention to. The lm is beautifully directed, and the actors do a superb job of giving stellar performances that are both raw an authentic. The drama will surely leave an impact on any viewer who watches it, making them think twice about family dynamics and their own humanity.

bottom of page