The Tested, based on the award-winning 2005 short film of the same name directed by Russell Costanzo and starring Aunjanue Ellis, Armando Riesco, Tobias Truvillion and Michael Morris Jr, will be available on DVD on July 24 this year. The film, which explores the complex relationship between mother and son grieving a family member, screened at the New Voices In Black Cinema Festival back in February. If you haven’t, check out the Q&A from that event and Tambay’s interview with the director HERE.
The Tested, which won Grand Jury Prizes for Best Film and Best Narrative feature at the 2011 American Black Film Festival, is described by Sam Pollard, its Award-winning producer and editor, as a “real” film that will provoke audiences to debate “from a social and racial perspective long after the credits roll.”
One year ago, plain clothes cop JULIAN VARONE gunned down an unarmed teen. DARRAYLYNN WARREN, the teen’s mother, has spiraled into a pit of despair, while his brother, DRE, flirts with gang life. As Julian prepares to get back to work, the three realize they cannot find closure without the other.
Being a 16 year old male and having to deal with his thirty-something mother is already difficult, they just don’t seem to speak the same language. But because of the death in their family a constant push-pull struggle ensues. He feels the need to grow up and become a man, while her needs are bit more complex – she wants him to step up as the head of the household and yet is still very protective of him. The fact that she is still grieving makes it nearly impossible for this relationship to fully blossom. After a mother already loses one of her sons, how can the remaining son carry all the responsibilities of the family? But there’s another side to all of this as well. How can the cop live with shooting an innocent kid? How do they all move past the tragedy and find their way through?
Watch the trailer below and clip underneath it.