Across the Line (2017)

Out of the approximately 600 players in the National Hockey League, thirty are Black. Mattie Slaughter, a hockey phenom from the rural Black community of North Preston, wants to make it thirty-one. To reach his goal, Mattie needs to keep his nose clean and avoid trouble. Hard to do though, when you go to a school where racism taints every interaction, your older brother is a hustler and you’re crushing on a girl who’s already hooked up.

Starts out alright but as a whole a rather lackluster film with a oversimplified view on racism.
Directed by a director who refers to himself as 'Director X' who after a bit of research was a Hype Williams trained musicvideo director previously going under the name of 'Little X' with his most famous effort before getting into film was Justin Bieber's Boyfriend video.
But 'Little X' didn't sound like a serious enough name to direct films and short films so he changed it to 'Director X' instead.
Anyhow, I would honestly not have thought he was a musicvideo-director because they tend to keep a very flashy look to their films (read: Belly by Hype Williams) and this looks a bit like a hallmark tv-movie of the week, and sort of has that feeling to it as well.
I don't mind smaller character driven films but it puts more weight on the actors, and while they are okay, okay is just not enough in this case. But then even if they were this movie would still be flawed because it doesn't have a whole lot to offer on any level and the oversimplified look on racism is more than often cringeworthy.

Freddie Films, Circle Blue Films, DHX Media by Director X., Floyd Kane.
Stars: Stephan James, Sarah Jeffery, Steven Love, Lanette Ware.

Genres: Drama

Keywords: canada ice hockey racism teenager halifax

08/01/2017

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