Fifth about The Seventh

Selah and the Spades

Selah and the Spades: the high school micro-cosmos is rife with opportunities to tell different stories, emulating aspects of society-at-large. So, Tayarisha Poe’s mashes up high school drama with crime saga to very entertaining results. It’s welcome to see two powerful young Black females taking lead of the action. The title character is not particularly likable, but her traits are well explained; Lovie Simone plays her nicely, calculating and control-freak. Celeste O’Connor is likewise nice as the initially naïve up-and-coming. Visually, the film, shot by director of photography Jomo Fray, alternates moments of neutral, cold distance, with moments of eerie delirium, and both of those fit the material. All that (visuals, story, characters), plus some choice music selection, make the experience more than a bit unsettling, but also quite interesting.

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