Family, one of the most important things in life. In good and bad times, they’re there for you. In My Nephew Emmett, Kevin Wilson Jr. reminds us of that again. His latest works have been screened all over the world and won different prestigious awards such as the GOLD MEDAL at the 44th Student Academy Awards and the Best African American Short Film Award from the Director’s Guild of America. It wouldn’t be a surprise if it also goes on an award-winning round this year because it’s in the running for the 90th Academy Award final shortlist. After you’ve watched the movie, you know that it’s very well deserved.
My Nephew Emmett is based on a true, sad story about 14-year-old Emmett Till (Jousha Wright) who visits his family (uncle, uncle’s wife, brothers) in the mid 1950’s. Despite their poverty, everything is going well for Emmett. Going out with friends while getting the first taste of love. His family also seems to be there for him, especially his uncle who he can always turn to for any advice a 14-year-old boy needs. However, their peace and quiet is abruptly interrupted when three white men turn up on their doorstep. No, we can definitely assure you that’s not to sell books or to talk about Jesus. The reason is so much darker than that. But what is it? And what impact will it have on Emmett and his family? Well, that’s for you to find out!
We have to admit that we didn’t hear about Emmett his story before we were able to watch this incredible movie. It’s actually sad that a story like this doesn’t find the recognition from the global audience that it deserves. However, it’s very encouraging to see that this was picked up by Wilson Jr. because it teaches us that history can really tell us something about the future. Something we can’t ignore. Just like this movie.
Not only did the incredible story made sure that we were drawn to the screen but also the human emotions being displayed in it are astonishing. There’s not a lot of dialogue in My Nephew Emmett but that makes the movie even more special. The emotions, facial expressions and sometimes also moments of silence become key which makes it so recognizable to everyone. Cause emotions are the non-verbal language we speak, something that the actors understand very well. Especially L.B. Williams who plays Emmett his uncle, who would give everything to his nephew, even his life. Together with Jousha Wright, they capture the uncle-nephew relationship perfectly.
Whether you heard about the story of Emmett and his family or not, this is a movie you should watch. It’s an astonishing film full of emotions about family, friends, but sadly also poverty and insecurity about the future. And for that reason, the story needs to be passed down from generation to generation because it can teach us something about the past, the future, and the moment itself. A film with a message, feelings and upcoming talent. Doesn’t this film deserve a place on the final Oscar list?
Film and Celebrity Reporter Liselotte Vanophem