Beloved | Chicago Reader

Beloved

The revelation of dark secrets in narratives is often anticlimactic, but not in this exquisite expressionist drama (1998) about a haunted woman who's escaped slavery to live in dreamy yet nightmarish isolation with her daughter in Ohio. In a small but labyrinthine house racked by violent supernatural activity, Sethe (Oprah Winfrey) and Denver (Kimberly Elise) receive unexpected visitors whose motives are powerful and obscure. One is Paul D (Danny Glover), a long-lost family friend who tells Sethe things about the past she didn't know. The other is a stranger (Thandie Newton) who competes with Denver for Sethe's attention before the four learn too much about one another to continue living like a family. Using overwhelmingly potent performances, audacious static close-ups, assertive lighting, and a rigorous yet lyrical interweaving of events set in three different time frames, this terrifyingly beautiful movie blends metaphor and stark social commentary to achieve a spontaneous grace. Akosua Busia, Richard LaGravenese, and Adam Brooks adapted the novel by Toni Morrison, and Jonathan Demme directed.

Credits

Cast information not available at this time.

What others are saying

  • Reviews/comments

    Subscribe to this thread:

    Add a review


    Roll over stars and click to rate.

    Now Playing

    By Film...

    By Theater...