From Oscar-nominated writer K.D. Davila and Director Carey Williams comes one of the year’s real triumphs. Here is my review of the hilarious but jarring, EMERGENCY.
EMERGENCY follows straight-A college student Kunle and his laid-back best friend Sean as they are about to have the most epic night of their lives. Determined to be the first Black students to complete their school’s frat party Legendary Tour, the friends strap in for their ultimate assignment. But a quick pit stop at home alters their plans when they find a white girl passed out on the living room floor. Faced with the risks of calling the police under life-altering optics, Kunle, Sean, and their Latino roommate Carlos must find a way to de-escalate the situation and get the girl the help she needs before it’s too late.
Emergency may come across as just another college party film but the witty sharp script lifts this to a new level. I found myself either in a state of pure laughter or shock and awe. A cast that really sparkles keeps this film fresh and honest. The film is a feature version of a 12 minute short that captivated Sundance and SXSW audiences. Emergency appears to be the perfect calling card film for Director Carey Williams and Writer K.D. Davila. They capture the humanity as much as the ridiculous nature of this group of youngsters. Michael Dallatorre’s cinematography adds depth and amplifies the parties, the drama and the tension. Rene G. Boscio’s musical touch adds relevance and the oomph needed for a theatrical experience. The movie is coming out at just the right time and place to hit big. It has the intelligence of DEAR WHITE PEOPLE mixed with the crazy adventure quality of SUPER BAD/BOOKSMART. I left this film wanting to talk about it.
A big shining light on Floridian RJ Cyler is needed. As the named figure in ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL RJ has stolen every scene he is in no matter the material. He was the best part of the fun THE HARDER THEY FALL and he dripped quality on WHITE BOY RICK. The kid is a freaking Power Ranger for gosh sakes. As the only “name” in this film he delivers ten fold. Take his character, Sean, out of the story and this is nothing. Donald Elise Watkins does shine as our lead, Kunle. His performance by the end of the film holds the most emotion and reality. Sebastian Chacon’s quirky portrayal as Carlos is reminiscent of Moises Arias character in THE KINGS OF SUMMER. The trio commands your attention throughout the hour and 45 minutes.
Put it simply. This is my favorite film this year. Go fucking see it.
Directed by: Carey Williams
Written by: K.D. Davila
Selig Rating: 5 Stars
Running Time: 1h 45min
Comedy / Drama / Thriller
In Theaters this Friday May 20th and on Prime Video May 27th
Starring: RJ Cyler, Donald Elise Watkins, Sebastian Chacon, Sabrina Carpenter, Maddie Nichols, Madison Thompson, Diego Abraham
The Selig Rating Scale:
5 Stars – Excellent movie, well worth the price.
4 Stars – Good movie
3 Stars – OK movie
2 Stars – No need to rush. Save it for a rainy day.
1 Star – Good that I saw it on the big screen but wish I hadn’t paid for it.