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With powerful poetry, this drama film exposes the harrowing and hard-hitting reality of racial injustice.


In Maceo Tendaji’s gripping short drama film ‘Paralysis’, the viewer is thrust into the raw, unsettling reality of racial injustice. Black Chakra’s portrayal of Dwayne, an innocent young black man, who becomes the target of an unfounded and violent arrest by a white police officer (Nate Nelson), lays bare the visceral, gut-wrenching impact of systemic racism. Dwayne’s encounter is a stark reminder of the countless similar tragedies that echo through black communities.

The film’s heartbeat, however, lies in its poignant divergence into poetic expression. As Dwayne’s neighbors bear witness to his suffering, they transform their collective pain into a symphony of resilience and defiance through deeply moving verses. Performances by Akilah Divine, Ephraim Nehemiah, and Analysis The Poet elevate the narrative to a higher plane, making the viewer feel every syllable of their anguish and hope. Their words cut through the silence left by the injustice, serving as a powerful testament to the strength and solidarity of the black community.

David I. Sloan’s cinematography complements this emotional journey with precision. His lens captures the intimate, almost suffocating tension of the moment, yet finds beauty in the resilience of those who stand in solidarity against oppression. The technical execution, from the careful framing, sound and editing, is immaculate.

‘Paralysis’ is a call to conscience, a mirror reflecting society’s failings. Its tragic twist is a brutal reminder of the stakes in this ongoing struggle. The performances are not just seen; they are felt, resonating deeply. Tendaji has crafted a short film that is tense and gripping, a masterclass in storytelling that demands to be seen. It’s a difficult watch, but an essential one, shedding light on the harsh realities of police brutality while empowering voices that refuse to be silenced.

Paralysis Short Film


Runtime: 9 min

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