First, thank the lord for Ava DuVernay. Second, get a glimpse of the story of Ruby’s self-discovery while waiting for her husband who has been sentenced to eight years in prison by watching the trailer for Middle of Nowhere (2012).
The moments that got me most in this film were the moments of stillness. Shots of Ruby walking, riding the bus, going about ordinary tasks in her home, close-ups on her face as those around her told her what she should do, who she is, where she went wrong, where she should go.
This film gave me a better understanding on what my high school English teacher used to press about “show, don’t tell.” Ruby didn’t always say what she was feeling, but you could see it on her face, glimpse it in the few flashbacks offered of her history with her husband.
The cinematography spoke volumes: cool blue and beige tones in the prison and even in Ruby’s own home up against the warmth of the places where she spends time with David Oyelowo’s character Brian.
The dialogue exchanged by characters was powerful because of what they didn’t say to each other, words left hanging. And when they landed, when they said what they finally wanted to say, it was so achingly human and satisfying.
So, like I said before. Thank the lord for Ava DuVernay. Now, go watch this movie.