If Beale Street Could Talk | Chicago Reader
click to enlarge If Beale Street Could Talk

If Beale Street Could Talk

If Beale Street Could Talk

Set in 1974, when New York City verged on bankruptcy and its neighborhoods were unraveling, director Barry Jenkins's luminous adaptation of James Baldwin's novel finds beauty and hope amid the decay and desperation in Harlem and Greenwich Village. This tender, lushly romantic drama follows Tish and Fonny, childhood friends who grow into adult soul mates (KiKi Layne and Stephan James), but who are sundered after they conceive a baby and a racist white cop frames Fonny for rape. Standouts among the supporting cast include Regina King as Tish's staunchly protective mother, and Brian Tyree Henry as Fonny's friend, hollowed out by his own recent two-year prison term on a trumped-up charge. James Laxton's cinematography is even more richly hued than his work on Jenkins's Moonlight, and the sound design and Nicholas Britell's score add to the movie's brimming sensory pleasures. With Colman Domingo, Michael Beach, Diego Luna, Pedro Pascal, and Emily Rios.



  • Barry Jenkins


  • KiKi Layne
  • Stephan James
  • Regina King
  • Colman Domingo
  • Teyonah Parris
  • Brian Tyree Henry
  • Michael Beach
  • Ed Skrein
  • Diego Luna
  • Dave Franco
  • Pedro Pascal
  • Aunjanue Ellis
  • Ebony Obsidian
  • Dominique Thorne
  • Finn Wittrock
  • Emily Rios
  • Bobby Conte Thornton
  • Marcia Jean Kurtz
  • Ethan Barrett
  • Milanni Mines


  • Barry Jenkins
  • James Baldwin


  • Adele Romanski
  • Barry Jenkins
  • Brad Pitt
  • Caroline Jaczko
  • Chelsea Barnard
  • Dede Gardner
  • Jeremy Kleiner
  • Jillian Longnecker
  • Mark Ceryak
  • Megan Ellison
  • Sara Murphy
  • Sarah Esberg

What others are saying

  • Now Playing

    By Film...

    By Theater...