|Michael B. Jordan & Melonie Diaz|
The character portrayals is what really moves the story here, mostly because the actors can portray all the right emotions. Michael B. Jordan was a sufficient choice to play Oscar. Jordan represents the misunderstood guy; the one who's making it by but could use a little more of a boost to start living better than he could be already. Oscar knows his living conditions are not top notch but he does what he can to make a good impression on others and be a good role model for his daughter. A good example of Oscar showing that he's working at being a better person is helping out a stranger played by (Ahna O'Reilly), who initially felt uncomfortable with him approaching her due to how he talked and dressed. Melonie Diaz as Oscar's girlfriend shows the strength when needed and that's usually around Tatiana. The chemistry between Diaz and Jordan also feel authentic and match their settings easily with their co-stars.
Ariana Neal as Oscar and Sophina's daughter is one of those rare child actors who show strong promise at an early age. Not only is her acting believable, but the intelligence and innocence that she gives the character of Tatiana is likable. Octavia Spencer as Oscar's mom also demonstrates the needed traits to be the mom of her older son. Spencer's chemistry really matches with Jordan's. Besides these main characters there are a number of other scenes that help define them and their surroundings. All of which go through the same motions most other people do everyday; sadness, euphoria, intimacy and frustration. This all goes back to the social commentary the film's message is trying to get across. Although individual's have troubled pasts, that doesn't mean any of them can change. Some are always working to be better than they were and the unfortunate thing is, sometimes society doesn't see that. Thus, making it a continuous uphill battle for the misunderstood.
|Being a father|
Aside from camerawork that is a bit too unstable for no apparent reason other than maybe to be as realistic as possible, the overall execution to this biopic/documentary is strong in its message to its audience. The music, writing and characters are all well developed and the actors that portray them suit the roles well, especially Michael B. Jordan as the main lead.
Points Earned --> 8:10