Indyfreak - wrote on 04/04/19
An aching solemn but exceptionally acted drama about a young couple's tribulations in 1970s Harlem. They face one hardship after another, culminating in the male protagonist Fonny (James) being wrongly incarcerated as his lover (Layne) has to prepare for her firstborn's arrival. James had a mediocre debut in the otherwise solid 2016 film RACE but he's far better here, displaying love or anger or hope or fear at his various situations. Kiki Layne is great as the beleaguered expecting young mother. Regina King is very good in the part that earned her first Oscar. The plot is nonlinear and doesn't really unfold until the close of the second act. It takes a while getting there but it's worth it. The story is perhaps a tad too grim at times.