Posted on December 26, 2016


Fences – The father in a low-income black family in 1950s Pittsburgh, Troy (Denzel Washington) is a garbage collector who blames whites for all his troubles. He tells stories – some have lessons in them -he drinks a lot, and loves his wife Rose (Viola Davis) but is messing around. Older son Lyons (Russell Hornsby) visits him only on payday and wants his dad to come hear him play; younger son Cory (Jovan Adepo) hopes to make a living playing football. Troy wants them to abide by his rules but thinks there are none for him.

Ms. Davis will definitely be nominated for her role here. My favorite was Mykelti Williamson as Gabe, the uncle who suffered a head injury in the war – he is just so sweet. Denzel not only starred in but directed the movie and will probably be nominated for both, but he did not do anything to help race relations with it. I’ve been told we teach others how to treat us and his constant referring to everyone around him as “niggers” only reinforces the attitude that if you can say it, so can I.
And even though it’s about a black family, it could just as easily have been about a white family in the same circumstances.