Movie Review: ‘Kings’

Revolving around the 1992 racially sparked riots in LA, movie ‘Kings’ makes a sincere attempt to bring the story to life. Directed by Oscar nominated director ‘Deniz Gamze Erguven’, the movie fails to form any lasting connection with the audience. It turns into a confusing cocktail of couple of factors that leave a story quite difficult to follow. Actors Halle Berry and Daniel Crag have done an excellent job to present their point of view in an otherwise weak story. Playing a strong-headed single foster mother to twelve at-risk kids in the South Central LA neighborhood, Millie works hard to bring smiles to this new family.

Her desire to keep everyone safe and be there for the troubled children depicts an excellent character who is challenged at several levels. Though her intentions are pure, subsequent bad luck drags her into unavoidable circumstances. She makes attempts to run the family single handedly, while struggling to make ends meet. Actress Halle Berry has brought the character to life, yet there was lot of scope to show her much stronger than depicted in reality. While the story of riots, shooting, racial discrimination and troubles run in the background, it fails to weave it in one specific direction.

The result is unnecessary complication and confusion that does not form any bond. Amidst rising tensions among the foster kids, differences in their ages and behavior, Millie’s efforts to hold them together and stereotypic attitude of the society, the movie loses its essence somewhere. Character of a confused neighbor Obie played by Daniel Crag adds to the overall story bringing unnecessary complications to the picture. While being suspicious of his neighbor and her extended family, Obie stays away yet finds himself dragged into the situation. Slowly as their differences transform into friendship, Obie and Millie try their best to protect the kids.

Involvement of some unbelievable and unnecessary scenes about arrest, attraction and comic timing seem inappropriate to the story. The film does succeed in presenting the truth faced in a partial environment. It deserves recognition for portraying a powerful woman who believes in the potential of her foster children. ‘Kings’ depicts the need of care, trust, and warmth to ensure a good upbringing. It shows the reality that unfavorable atmosphere makes it difficult for the younger minds, struggling to find their place in the society.

Though it presents the truth, it leaves a confused feeling of whether to sympathize with the character or make yet another attempt to read the motive. The dynamic nature of the story with multiple chaos thrown at once confuses the audience about the real purpose behind it. No sooner do they connect with Millie’s desire to make everyone safe and happy or bond with Obie who does his best, it seems to go off the track.

A sincere attempt to depict the truth coupled with some strong actors, yet weak story defines the course of ‘Kings’ that delivers the dangers of discrimination.

KINGS will be available to own (EST) on July 17 and on demand July 31.


A freelance writer with love for movies, Lavanya contributes articles about entertainment, lifestyle, relationships, women, environment and food. Blogging about her experiences, adventures, memories and thoughts,she likes to stay connected with her readers. While enjoying movies and series based on comedy, family drama and social significance, Lavanya loves the opportunity to pen down her reviews for the audience.

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