In the wake of protests inspired by the death of George Floyd and a resurgence in the Black Lives Matter movement, studios have been stepping up to make their films about racial inequality available for free as an educational tool. There’s Ava DuVernay’s searing documentary “13th,” available for free on YouTube from Netflix — which has also created a Black Lives Matter category on the platform — “Just Mercy,” starring Michael B. Jordan, from Warner Bros.; a lineup of films from Black directors free on the Criterion Channel; and now indie distributor Neon has made the 2018 film “Monsters and Men” available for free on VOD platforms. Through June, you can check it out on Apple TV, Google Play, FandangoNow, and Vudu, free of charge.
Written and directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green, the drama, which first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, draws inspiration from the 2014 death of Eric Garner, who died in Staten Island after a cop put him in a chokehold. This compelling story of racial turmoil stars John David Washington, Anthony Ramos, Jasmine Cephas Jones, Cara Buono, and Kelvin Harrison Jr. A triptych of interwoven stories is set off after a bystander films the death of a Black man at the hands of police, igniting racial tensions throughout a neighborhood in New York City.
Out of Sundance 2018, IndieWire’s Eric Kohn wrote, “Green unearths fascinating parallels with his three leads, particularly in the way that each of them struggles to answer friends and relatives who encourage them to stay silent (and therefore complicit) in the injustices around them. Green doesn’t always find the most satisfying transitions between the stories, although in a post-‘Crash’ era it’s satisfying to see a movie unwilling to make this school of consequential ensemble storytelling into a laundry list of themes. The filmmaker’s naturalistic style — minimal use of music, roving camerawork — echoes the Dardenne brothers, and ‘Monsters and Men’ could easily fit into their filmography of socially-conscious dramas.”
Neon originally distributed the movie in September 2018.
Starting today through the end of the month, Reinaldo Marcus Green’s MONSTERS AND MEN is available to watch for free on Apple TV, Google Play, FandangoNow and Vudu. pic.twitter.com/IfVggoDDdb
— NEON (@neonrated) June 13, 2020