Report of our EXpedition

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Finding the "Medicine for Melancholy"

I had been hoping to see this film for almost a year, since it was released. And thankfully, I was not disappointed in the long wait. Medicine for Melancholy begins, as as a young man and woman awaken from a one night stand, after a party. Both vaguely remember the night before, as the woman, Angela is in a hurry to forget, while the man, Micah is hoping for something more. The couple then share a cab to their respective homes, where upon exiting, Angela leaves her purse behind in the cab, only to have Micah pick it up. From here, Micah goes off to search for Angela, and after finding her, what was a night to forget, becomes a day to remember.

This film does not read as a formulaic romantic comedy, where an unrealistic adventure ensues. What does take place is a very human evolution of a relationship between a man and a woman. Micah tries to break down the defensive emotional wall that Angela reluctantly has put up toward Micah. Over the course of the day, both Angela and Micah explore and discover the pieces of each other that may have brought them together in the first place.

What grabbed my about this film, was its simplicity in showing real people, real Black people in a setting of courtship and attraction. There was no vulgarity or over-the-top action, to express the true subtleties of ones fondness toward another. All you see is real people in their vulnerability and awkwardness regarding one another. This was achieved by creating a slow pace, and taking deliberate shots to show the intricate nuances of each character. The director, Barry Jenkins has created, what I hope will be a classic of the new decade. And I anticipate that the actors, Wyatt Cenac(Micah) and Tracey Heggins(Angela), will have long careers ahead of them.

This film may be playing at an independent theater near you. It may also be available at your nearest retailer or visit or

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Another good review. I think though that vulgarity does have its place!