Director Rick Famuyiwa wears his influences very heavily on his sleeve. The Breakfast Club even receives a namecheck here (Malcolm's final speech will remind viewers of the closing soliloquy given by Brian "The Brain" in John Hughes' classic movie). And there is more than a passing nod to Spike Lee's films Do The Right Thing and School Daze.
Award winning actor and writer Cyril Nri and I are cogitating thus because an actor we know, one decorated by Her Majesty for services to British acting and star of a hit US series, has had his remarks, regarding slim-pickings for black actors, turned into this broadsheet headline, "David Harewood: as a black actor there are very few roles for me in Britain".
Watching black boys from London as protagonists made me giddy with joy, made me a black girl from London feel recognised, less invisible in the wider world. I don't know much about the actors that played the teenagers but their mannerisms and accents were convincing. Even in dealing with the film's drug dealing sublot which felt superflous - empty, weighty and simplistic - they were earnest enough.