NashFilm52: ‘Queen of Glory’ Review

Nana Mensah’s directorial debut is full of potential and shines a light on the immigrant experience.

Courtesy of NashFilm

Nashville Film Festival 2021 is finally here! I am so excited to be able to write tons of reviews for you all and tell you all about the films I am watching on my Twitter and Letterboxd. As you can see, I started my coverage a little early with my review of the music documentary, The Fable of a Song. Before the festival started I looked through the guide and pinned down which films would interest me to write a review on because I doubt I can write one for every single film that premieres here plus I need to share this space with Brad and Luis. Queen of Glory caught my attention instantly because of its beautiful poster, but as I read the synopsis I was intrigued. Let me tell you that this movie did not disappoint at all.

Queen of Glory focuses on Sarah, played by Nana Mensah (The King of Staten Island, Bonding, 13 Reasons Why) a Ghanaian American woman who is planning to move to Ohio with her secret lover. Life seems to be moving quickly and all of a sudden Sarah’s life is struck with a family tragedy. This tragedy leads to Sarah exploring her options and what she really wants out of her life. Along with having to confront her relationship with her estranged father. Through its runtime we are dissecting this character study and a portrayal of the immigrant experience.

Courtesy of NashFilm

Nana Mensah who serves as our writer, director, and main actress crafts a beautiful film about loss, identity, and the immigrant experience. Right off the bat, this film is beautifully crafted with its cinematography by Cybel Martin. There are some very pleasing lighting setups and the color palette is enticingly rich. The score and production design are impeccable as it really creates the atmosphere of Sarah’s culture. The film also includes some wonderful performances from actors like Meeko who portrays Pitt. Meeko and Mensah’s chemistry is wonderful and every time they both share the screen it is delightful. The story feels a bit rushed and leaves the viewer wanting a bit more time with some of our characters especially Sarah’s father. This could have used another extra 30 minutes to flesh out some more and I would not have mind at all. The strength of this film are there and its commentary and message about the immigrant experience joined by a struggle to know what Sarah wants make this film worth it. Nana Mensah’s directing career will be filled with better work as she continues and I am very excited for what is to come from her.

Queen of Glory will have its premiere at the Nashville Film Festival on October 4th, to purchase tickets to attend the event visit here.

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