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4.0
2,952 Ratings

Shadows

Directed by John Cassavetes
United States, 1958
Drama, Avant-Garde

Synopsis

Set in New York City, circa 1960, a passionate interracial romance between a fair African-American woman, Lelia, and a white man, Tony, erupts when he meets Lelia’s darker-skinned jazz singer brother, and discovers that her racial heritage is not what he thought it was.

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Shadows Directed by John Cassavetes
Shadows may be all ‘about’ race and racism, but its originality lies in the unresolved complexity with which Cassavetes treats those perennial subjects.
March 14, 2018
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Jubilant energy feeds the film and finds a correlation in the movie’s grainy starkness, its disjointed dialogue, jumpy editing, occasionally incongruous mise-en-scene, and its aggressive shifts in focus and lighting. Unaffected performances by Ben Carruthers, Lelia Goldoni, and Hugh Hurd… are aided by Cassavetes’ penchant for long takes; when a scene went wrong, he would start at the beginning in order to give the actors room to settle in and resume the characters to their fullest realisation.
July 10, 2016
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The fringes of the fringes, John Cassavetes’ turf, an impressionistic whirl worth a thousand fumbled words… A highly variegated snapshot of diner booths, sidewalks, studios and terminals, a sustained rediscovery of the face in close-up, volatile and vulnerable. The drama and the comedy spring from “a problem with the races, that’s all” (cf. Daves’ Kings Go Forth), the hippest spot in town is not immune to a prejudice that can terminate a romance with a single glance.
August 03, 2015
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