Composed of intimate and unencumbered moments of people in a community, HALE COUNTY THIS MORNING, THIS EVENING (currently nominated for a Best Documentary Academy Award) allows the viewer an emotive impression of the Historic South – trumpeting the beauty of life and consequences of the social construction of race, while simultaneously a testament to dreaming – despite the odds.
How does one express the reality of individuals whose public image, lives, and humanity originate in exploitation? Photographer and filmmaker RaMell Ross employs the integrity of nonfiction filmmaking and the currency of stereotypical imagery to fill in the gaps between individual black male icons. Hale County This Morning, This Evening is a lyrical innovation to the form of portraiture that boldly ruptures racist aesthetic frameworks that have historically constricted the expression of African American men on film.
In the lives of protagonists Daniel and Quincy, quotidian moments and the surrounding southern landscape are given importance, drawing poetic comparisons between historical symbols and the African American banal. Images are woven together to replace narrative arc with visual movements. As Ross crafts an inspired tapestry made up of time, the human soul, history, environmental wonder, sociology, and cosmic phenomena, a new aesthetic framework emerges that offers a new way of seeing and experiencing the heat, and the hearts of people in the Black Belt region of the U.S. as well far beyond.
“An extraordinary film about ordinary lives… a blast of pure visual poetry from photographer turned doc maker RaMell Ross, who shot more than 1,300 hours… distilling his work to an almost surreal 76 mins.” (Toronto Star)
“Subtly affecting and boldly ambitious.” (NOW Magazine)
“Expertly visualizes the complexities of black American life… The fact that the film has snagged a spot on the Academy Award shortlist for best doc feature is evidence of its unique prowess.” (Globe and Mail)
“You could call it a transcendental scrapbook, because it wipes away the muck of subjectivity that guides most movies. It turns the audience into direct receptors of experience.” (Variety)
Doors 3:20 pm Movie 3:40 pm *Sharp! Please arrive on time.
Advance tickets $10.50 HERE | $12.50 at the door
*Minors permitted in the balcony! Must be 19+ w/ID for bar service and main floor seating.
**Rio Theatre Groupons and passes OK. Please redeem at the door.
HALE COUNTY THIS MORNING, THIS EVENING (RaMell Ross, 2018 / 76 mins / PG) In HALE COUNTY THIS MORNING, THIS EVENING, director RaMell Ross offers an inspired and intimate portrait of a place and its people. The film presents Daniel Collins and Quincy Bryant, two young African American men from rural Hale County, Alabama, over the course of five years. Collins attends college in search of opportunity while Bryant becomes a father to an energetic son in an open-ended, poetic form that privileges the patiently observed interstices of their lives. The audience is invited to experience the mundane and monumental, birth and death, the quotidian and the sublime, all of which combine to communicate the region’s deep culture and glimpse the complex ways the African American community’s collective image is integrated into America’s visual imagination.