Director: Melina Matsoukas
Writers: James Frey, Lena Waithe
Stars: Daniel Kaluuya, Jodie Turner-Smith, Bokeem Woodbine, Sturgill Simpson
Nomination: Directors Guild of America, Outstanding Directorial Achievement of a First-Time Feature Film Director
While on a forgettable first date together in Ohio, a black man (Daniel Kaluuya) and a black woman (Jodie Turner-Smith), are pulled over for a minor traffic infraction. The situation escalates, with sudden and tragic results, when the man kills the police officer in self-defense. Terrified and in fear for their lives, the man, a retail employee, and the woman, a criminal defense lawyer, are forced to go on the run. As they drive, these two unlikely fugitives will discover themselves and each other in the most dire and desperate of circumstances, and will forge a deep and powerful love that will reveal their shared humanity and shape the rest of their lives.
This is one of the best and most important movies of the year.
Matsoukas also finds two first-rate performances in Kaluuya and Turner-Smith. Theirs is one of the more carefully paced romances in recent memory, and the subtle way their tension switches from fear to desire is masterful.