Friday, December 23, 2016

'Fences' Extends From the Stage to Film, Bringing With It All of Its Intensity and Verbosity

Viola Davis and Denzel Washington reprise their Tony-winning roles as Rose and Troy Maxson in the film adaptation of "Fences." Photos courtesy of Paramount Pictures.


the beginning of "Fences,"  Troy (star, director and producer Denzel Washington) delivers a long monologue during a backyard scene.

My first thought was "Oh, Lord, it's going to be a play on the big screen." I wasn't prepared for this, thus prepared to be bored, for "Fences" is a very loquacious play.

It feels less like a play as the film unfolds, but never sheds that imprint. This is intentional.

"Denzel went back to the original screenplay, and he wanted to stay close to spirit of the stage play," Constanza Romero disclosed to the New York Film Critics Online (NYFCO) after its screening of "Fences" at Walter Reade Theater.

CR, a Tony-nominated costume designer, is the widow of August Wilson, the creator of "Fences," the Pulitzer Prize-winning play from which the film is adapted.

When DW phoned to get her blessing to direct the film version, she said she obliged.  "I felt like a green light  all the way, " CR said during the NYFCO Q&A.

"Fences," AW's slice of Americana set in 1950s Pittsburgh concerning the life of Troy Maxson, a onetime baseball great and garbage collector, as well as his family, opens widely on Christmas Day.

For those laboring under the assumption that "Fences" marks DW's directorial debut, it does not. That distinction goes  to "Antwone Fisher."

It has taken a while for "Fences" to come to the big screen mainly because of AW's edict  that it be directed by a black person. He produced a script, which was touched up by an uncredited Tony Kushner.

In his third outing as a director,  DW excels, particularly with himself by not overwhelming the proceedings with his consequence as the main character. The pacing is brisk  enough. "Fences" does not seem overlong at 139 minutes. Characters have organic movements,  seamlessly distractimg from all of the talk, for "Fences" is a loquacious film.

Emotions are on a tight coil, though the medium of film allows the players to let it rip. The camera subtly lingers on important details, such as an image of Pittsburgh steelworkers sans any black men, without looking askance. 

No doubt, DW admonished production designer David Gropman to keep the sets spare in deference to his source material. Surely, he had the budget to be more lavish.

The tension present in the play is as papable on screen. Viewers will find it difficult to watch at their ease, for almost every interaction is a tinderbox on the point of exploding. Even the most innocuous-seeming, as when best friend, Jim (Stephen McKinley Henderson), tracks Troy to a favorite haunt where they have a conversation heavy laden with meaningful nonverbal communication.

Troy (Denzel Washington) and Jim (Stephen McKinley Henderson) return from a day's work in "Fences."

Incidentally, the performances are generally stellar. The actors deliver like cogs in a well-oiled machine. All of the principals are reprising their Broadway roles, except the two youngest, Cory (Jovan Adepo) and Raynell (Saniyya Sidney).

Virtually every scene is powerful and significant. Two in particular stand out. The one between Troy and youngest son, Cory, is one. The boy stubbornly refuses to exhibit the manners he has been taught - Strike 3. Consequently, Troy is forced to demonstrate who is the man of his house.

A young lady with whom this reporter chatted during the reception following the film's New York premiere (at Frederick P. Rose Hall, home of Jazz at Lincoln Center Rose Hall) at Tavern on the Green, judged Troy's treatment of his son harsh.

Point taken, Father might have spared the rod a bit more, after all, the boy was not without some righteous indignation. Further, the punishment did not fit the crime. However, the young pup needed to be taught some facts of life. Specifically, some  respect; a non too-gentle reminder about who pays the bills; a refresher on to whom he owes his surly, ungrateful existence.

Rose (Viola Davis and Gab (Mykelti Williamson), far left, are spectators as Cory (Jovan Adepo) and Troy (Denzel Washington) talk football.

The other scene is Rose's (Viola Davis) confronting Troy about the fallout from his infidelity. Her dissertation is so passionate that viewers will be jolted by her pain, anguish and fury; an utter betrayal of one who has been unwaveringly loyal.

"In all of his plays, August tried to pay homage to his mother, CR responded when I asked her whether he would be pleased with the film.

The short answer is yes. However, she alluded to the aforesaid and a companion scene by way of a fuller answer. "He was very reverent of his mother," she added.

"Fences" is an important work in the pantheon of American artistic expression and important for numerous other reasons.

My preference is that it remained a play only. Alas, as such, far too few would have an opportunity to see it. As a film, it opens up to the world. One hopes the world will embrace it.

Jim (Stephen McKinley Henderson), Troy (Denzel Washington) and Cory (Jovan Adepo) in the Maxson backyard where a fence construction is in progress.

"Fences" has myriad teachable moments. About dreams destroyed. About extremely limited opportunities sanctioned by the State. About injustice. About the basic unfairness of life. About brokenness. About forgiveness. About love. About the black experience in America. About black history.  About American history. 

Just as important, it is a fine entertainment, showcasing fine performances.

"Fences" is rated PG-13 for thematic elements, language and some suggestive references; visit to learn more about the film.


  1. That appears to be excellent however i am still not too sure that I like it. At any rate will look far more into it and decide personally! filmy online

    1. HD Streamz will help you watch your favorite movies on your phone. HD Streamz apk is the version exclusively for android, the application is used by many people every day.

  2. It must be a bigger one.Fencing around shooting spot helps a lot from unwanted conseqences.Vinyl Fence Calgary is a good one for fencing.

  3. I cannot explain the feelings I had while reading this blog. I was completely fascinated.
    holm law group san diego

  4. This is particularly convenient when leasing kids' movies as, we as a whole know, they could watch a similar film a few times each day for a considerable length of time.

  5. From a movie investor's business perspective it takes entirely too long for an indie movie to generate money going the self-distribution route. It's like the old school way of selling your movie out of the trunk of your car at places, but now it's done online using digital distribution and direct sales via a blog.

  6. Amazingly accommodating post. This is my first time i visit here. I found such an extensive number of captivating stuff in your blog especially its trade. Genuinely its unprecedented article. Keep it up. fmovies

  7. The general population that give aren't giving you cash hoping to ever observe anything back or get an arrival on speculation. It resembles betting with a bankroll that is free.putlocker tv shows

  8. A complete sententious blog, intended to impress people.

  9. Slide film is generally not so forgiving. This makes sense when you realize that you often view slide film directly (through a slide viewer or something), where as in a negative, you have to either scan it or print it - it's in this printing or scanning process that the exposure can be fixed. Some say that slides can be exposure-corrected if you print or scan them too, while some still insist that slide film is definitely not as tolerant as negatives. movies 123

  10. Setup in a screenplay should establishe World, Characters, and Theme leading to the call section with small revelations, foreseen new situations and a glimpse of living a full life.
    The conflict should be established in the first 10 pages.
    All the main players should bet revealed early enough.
    Setup should show a place, a time, a mood or the point of view.
    Setup should be built with small revelations, foreseen new situations and a glimpse of living a full life. Screenplay setup

  11. These days we have a lot of interesting shows on various different diverse topics.bigbrotherhoh

  12. The last thing you want is a site that provides grainy, cloudy resolution, especially on your HD TV. Speed is another consideration

  13. Superbly written article, if only all bloggers offered the same content as you, the internet would be a far better place.. the crown dvd

  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

  15. You can charge reasonable prices for snacks and small fees for carnival games to keep it affordable while raising money.123movies

  16. New movies can always be displayed as fresh content so the subs are right in front of you when you log in STR Subtitles

  17. There's almost certainly that the innovation of today offers a vastly improved picture projection when it's changed over from film to digital. In countless transformations, the duplicate is superior to the first. Best film to digital converters

  18. This is my first time i visit here. I found so many interesting stuff in your blog especially its discussion. From the tons of comments on your articles, I guess I am not the only one having all the enjoyment here! keep up the good work buy dvd once upon a time season 6

  19. In spite of the fact that movies are made for all watchers, there are movies made that are sexual orientation particular. For instance, activity and spine chiller movies are made dominatingly for guys.gomovies

  20. There have been several westerns that have also used the Battle of Alamo in 1836, the Civil War or the Mexican Revolution in 1910 as their milieu genres film

  21. Movies are brilliant side interest. Movies are delighted in by individuals around the globe. There are a huge number of movies made every year, and a great many movie fans.

  22. Tell watchers what you are putting out there for them to see. Get the online buzz moving like Presidente shots for your film. See what watchers need to state about your motion movies

  23. When choosing to lease online movies there are various organizations who offer this administration and you ought to consider your choices cautiously before picking one. yesmovies unblocked

  24. This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free.
    jadwal film bioskop

  25. HEY. ITS a great post, I hope you will write more often than now..
    Your blog is really helpful. Tell me how you manage blog like this However thanks, it's a good article. I will visit you again for sure

  26. WOW. awesome post, I'm a blogger too.
    Just googled your site. I have some questions, if you can PM me People appreciate your effors put in this website. Good luck with your website

  27. Good morning. really thanks for sharing, I have found your blog last time, I regret that I didn't find it before.
    I own a similar blog. Can you email me? I wanted to ask few questions Nevermind, thank you for your knowledge. See you soon mate

  28. Wow, excellent post. I'd like to draft like this too - taking time and real hard work to make a great article. This post has encouraged me to write some posts that I am going to write soon. skymovies

  29. 123movies happy to partner with eOneFilms

  30. THX. it is valuable share, I just discovered your blog.
    I just found this post in google. Is this blogger website? I appreciate your effort brother. Youre doing good job bro

  31. NICE. It is a good article, I discovered your website just some time ago.
    I needed such post. I also like the theme of your website However thanks, it's a good article. I will be your greatest reader some day

  32. They have networks with tv shows and movie production houses as a result of which they are able to provide a huge number of TV shows and movies. cima for you

  33. discover this Gucci Dolabuy click to read Chrome-Hearts Dolabuy have a peek at this web-site


Creative Commons License
VEVLYN'S PEN: The Wright take on life by Vevlyn Wright is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License .
Based on a work at .
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at .