This Friday, Amazon Prime will drop Mangrove, the first of five new features from 12 Years A Slave and Widows director Steve McQueen, whose Small Axe anthology aims to shine on a light on the West Indian community of South London. A new film hits the streamer every Friday throughout November and December, with one of the most anticipated being Lovers Rock, an intimate look at an ‘80s house party set to a soundtrack of soul and reggae. Today, Amazon dropped the first trailer for the film.
“McQueen has zoomed in on a very specific milieu, but he’s also tapped into the universal and suddenly inaccessible joy of an endless night of music and dance, a house party for the ages,” we wrote when we caught the film at the New York Film Festival. McQueen, we said, “has never made a film this loose and joyful.”
See for yourself below:
Micheal Ward and Amarah-Jae St. Aubyn lead the cast of Lovers Rock, which lands on Amazon on November 27. Red, White And Blue, Alex Wheatle, and Education, the next three films in Small Axe, drop on December 4, 11, and 18, respectively.
See plot synopses for each below:
Red, White And Blue (Premieres Friday, December 4)
Red, White and Blue tells the true story of Leroy Logan, a young forensic scientist with a yearning to do more than his solitary laboratory work. When he sees his father assaulted by two policemen, he finds himself driven to revisiting a childhood ambition to become a police officer; an ambition borne from the naïve hope of wanting to change racist attitudes from within. First, Leroy has to face the consequences of his father’s disapproval, never mind the blatant racism he finds in his new role as a despised yet exemplary Constable in the Metropolitan Police Force. John Boyega (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and Steve Toussaint (Prince of Persia) star with talented newcomers Tyrone Huntley, Nathan Vidal and Jaden Oshenye. Red, White and Blue was co-written by Courttia Newland and Steve McQueen.
Alex Wheatle (Premieres Friday, December 11)
Alex Wheatle follows the true story of award-winning writer Alex Wheatle (Sheyi Cole) from a young boy through his early adult years. Having spent his childhood in a mostly white institutional care home with no love or family, he finally finds not only a sense of community for the first time in Brixton, but his identity and ability to grow his passion for music and DJing. When he is thrown in prison during the Brixton Uprising of 1981, he confronts his past and sees a path to healing. Sheyi Cole stars opposite Jonathan Jules. Alex Wheatle was co-written by Alastair Siddons and Steve McQueen.
Education (Premieres Friday, December 18)
Education is the coming of age story of 12-year-old Kingsley, a boy with a fascination for astronauts and rockets. When Kingsley is called to the Headmaster’s office for disruptive behaviour in class, he is shocked to discover his transfer to a school for those with “special needs.” Distracted by working two jobs, his parents are unaware of what was an unofficial segregation policy at play, preventing many Black children from having the education they deserve until a group of West Indian women take matters into their own hands. Newcomer Kenyah Sandy stars opposite Sharlene Whyte (We Hunt Together, Casualty), Daniel Francis (Once Upon A Time, Homefront), Tamara Lawrance (The Long Song, Kindred) and Josette Simon (Wonder Woman, Silent Witness, Law & Order: UK). Education was co-written by Alastair Siddons and Steve McQueen.