Spellbinding: The Cinematic Virtuosity of Barry Jenkins
Across his three feature films to date (Medicine for Melancholy, Moonlight, and If Beale Street Could Talk), Barry Jenkins has devised a new cinematic vocabulary for the portrayal of the Black experience in the United States. With sumptuous imagery and hypnotic soundscapes, Jenkins has embraced aesthetic beauty as a strategy for addressing the past and present injustices that bear on the lives of marginalized characters. His 2021 miniseries, The Underground Railroad is adapted from Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name. A haunting, atmospheric account of two runaway slaves in the Antebellum South, the series is Jenkins’ most daring directorial work yet.
Our virtual roundtable will feature three of Jenkins’ longtime collaborators: Joi McMillon (editor, and the first Black woman to be nominated in the Best Editing category of the Academy Awards), James Laxton (cinematographer), and Onnalee Blank (re-recording mixer/supervising sound editor). Join us for a conversation with these artists about how they work together to make such intensely affecting sounds and images, saturated with emotion and keyed to social consciousness.