King Richard Review
There's a specific heartbreak watching a man get beat up before his small children. We witness it happening in the beginning of the film, when Richard Williams (Will Smith) confronts a local hoodman for flinging with his young girl Venus (Saniyya Sidney). We learn that this isn't the first time this has been witnessed by the oft-prized often dismissed, frequently shamed father.
King Richard produced by executive producer Venus and Serena the film is a tribute to his unwavering ambition, and without it, they've stated they could never been who they are today. A biopic that does not feel like a biopic or a sport film that doesn't feel like a film about sports It's a wildly entertaining but intense family drama an ode to the bond of love that held the two of them — even if their father's smugness and bullying constantly threatened to break the bond.
Smith's rendition of Richard Williams doesn't care what people think, and is characterized by an almost inexplicably smug attitude: He's the Terminator of tennis parents, shunning people who don't please the ego of his character, not shy about insulting people with power, even putting an end to any meeting he does not like by screaming. Smith is a mix of insecurity and confidence, wearing a hunch which reveals the way he thinks he is. Smith takes on the role of Williams and wears only a little make-up (mostly eyebrows) to make him look like everyone elsewhich isn't exactly Charlize Theron or Aileen Wuornos level of deceit, but enough to make it look like the Will Smith Show. This is his finest work since his heydays.
There aren't many huge cheesy scenes. There are no montages. No melodrama.
But despite the main persona taking the center on the stage, Venus and Serena share the spotlight. They are young Sidney as well as Demi Singleton deliver a couple of lively performances that show Venus and Serena's enviable star quality. and with a naturality that makes them appear as if they are real siblings. The entire family is tight, especially Aunjanue Elise as Richard's sulky wife Brandi She has a calm presence that is very loud when pulled.
Director Reinaldo Green made waves with his 2018 taut thriller Monsters And Men, which examined race through the perspective of conflicted characters. Race is a pulsating theme as well, bouncing around throughout the film as Richard is able to break down the gates of a sparkling white industry. Zach Baylin's screenplay portrays Richard as an individual who is refusing to be held back as he refuses to accept his place in the world, refusing to fall into hand of those who could have his family and him to be a failure. He is determined to rise from Compton.
King Richard does not reinvent the wheel He doesn't take wild swings, and is happy to provide an enjoyable crowd pleaser. What's amazing is what isn't happening. There aren't any big embarrassing moments. There are no montages. No melodrama. It has the beats you'd prefer, but not falling into cliché. There's a touch of warmth that's so infused that you're carried along the film, cheering on every Williams in the screen. It's also gorgeous Robert Elswit's cinematography soaking the entire film in a gorgeous glowing golden light — and in love with it.