• Strictly Films

Guava Island Quick View An Enjoyably Fine Watch That Needed More Meat on its Bones Grade: C+

Source: IMDB

Guava Island is a full length featured music video... About a singer Deni (Donald Glover), whom hopes one day he can change Guava Island the way it used to be with a song. As the island can have peace and harmony without the hate and big evil corporate heads ruining the island with their over worked laborers and pollution. For what this featured length film is, if you can call it that due to it doesn’t even hit an hour... Not bad. The Cinematography is it’s strongest aspect of the film, it looks really beautiful. The way the island looks is colorful and has a unique style, I love the 4X4 ratio frame very much so. The cast were honestly fine. Donald Glover does a great job as Deni, he has the charm and charisma this character needed to have. Very entertaining to watch whether it be his character or his singing in general, as one whom see Glover perform live I can tell you watching him alone will keep you entertained, even with a story that barely works. Rihanna playing the love childhood interest Kofi wasn’t that good, her performance was pretty stale for me. She really doesn’t do much of anything, it felt very flat and unconvincing, no sense of real emotion either. I really enjoyed Nonso Anozie playing the role of Red Cargo, although the film under utilizes this antagonist, he did a very good job with this role. So I enjoyed the music in this film, the problem is there are songs misplaced in this film. When they played This is America, a song in which I enjoyed... It was honestly embarrassing to watch in the scene they had placed this song in. It just looked out of placed, the choreography wasn’t good either, I hated the comedic side they did with the phone scene as it wasn’t funny it just looked dumb. Deni sings a song at the end, at a festival and this song is suppose to being peace and harmony to Guava Island as it once was... This song in no way shape or form, would change this island for the better. I would’ve rather Deni sing tap into Childish Gambino’s catalog, like Stand Tall, a beautiful uplifting song, it would be perfect for this scene. This song doesn’t work in this scene, at one point the song’s lyrics was talking about texting a girl all night, and I’m like... How would anybody on this island know what texting is?! Nobody on this island has a phone, I don’t think anybody on this island knows the slightest clue about texting. When Deni performs This is America or Summertime Magic, his lips are not moving when the song is playing, why?! It looks lazy, fix it. I loved the animation in the beginning, thought it was lovely. The story itself is fine, predictably came to play, as I would’ve liked more scenes in this story so it can be better told. It’s a charming little tale, but there needs to be more to tell in this story, as well as a little more thrill needs to be added. Overall, Guava Island is an enjoyably fine simple little film. If you want to check this one out on Amazon Prime, go right ahead it’s a nice watch you get through one time and just never watch it again. -Mitch Smietana

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