Fences is August Wilson's long running Broadway play brought to the big screen and, although the movie has a strong cast, Denzel Washington does most of the heaving lifting in this movie. He directed the Pulitzer Prize winning Fences and also stars in the movie as Troy, a man who's dealing with the obstacles life has for him as an African American man in the 1950's.
Viola Davis plays Rose, his long suffering wife, Jovan Adepo plays his son Cory, Mykelti Williamson is Troy's brother (who has some mental issues after being wounded in the war) and long time character actor, Stephen Henderson, plays Troy's best friend Bono. All of the supporting characters add layers to the story but it's Denzel's character, Troy, who drives this bus. As the movie unfolds we learn about Troy. He spent time in prison, he loved baseball but after his stint in prison he got a late start in the Negro Leagues. He was raised in the south and, after being forced to leave home by his harsh and strict father, he moved to Pittsburgh searching for a better life. That's where he met Rose and, on the surface, she seemed to change him.
Troy is a lively character who tells stories, brags, boasts and all the while makes no secret about being illiterate. He's loving and hateful, he's kind and he's mean, but mainly he's interesting and when he delivers the words of playwright August Wilson he almost seems like he's playing an instrument; rather than speaking. A big trombone of colorful words and phrases that provoke thought and convey emotions. He should definitely be considered an Oscar contender for best actor of the year.
It'll take you a little while to get used to the pace of the heavy, non-stop dialogue. This is a thinking man's (and woman's) movie. The movie proves that there is power in just the spoken word, with no explosions, cut aways or special effects.
Fences has a run time of two hours and 18 minutes and it's rated PG-13. The movie is a piece of artwork that should not be missed. On my "Hollywood Popcorn Scale" I give Fences my highest rating-a JUMBO with extra butter! Hollywood Hernandez