‘If Beale Street Could Talk’ Trailer Hints at Another Lushly-told Story from Barry Jenkins


 Word is that Barry Jenkins' "If Beale Street Could Talk" is an extremely artsy take on the James Baldwin novel set in 1970's Harlem and having to do with a wrongful prison conviction.

The film, Jenkins' follow-up to his 2016 Oscar Best Picture winner "Moonlight," has been test screening in Los Angeles for a few months now, and word of mouth has been decidedly mixed. 

Jenkins brought "Moonlight" to Telluride a few years ago, where he was the toast of the town. The director has a long history with the festival, starting there as a volunteer and then, eventually, being in charge of shorts program. It doesn't help that "If Beale Street Could Talk" is set to NOT appear at Telluride later this month. It will premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival instead.


Here’s the synopsis for James Baldwin’s "If Beale Street Could Talk":

"In this honest and stunning novel, James Baldwin has given America a moving story of love in the face of injustice. Told through the eyes of Tish, a nineteen-year-old girl, in love with Fonny, a young sculptor who is the father of her child, Baldwin’s story mixes the sweet and the sad. Tish and Fonny have pledged to get married, but Fonny is falsely accused of a terrible crime and imprisoned. Their families set out to clear his name, and as they face an uncertain future, the young lovers experience a kaleidoscope of emotions–affection, despair, and hope. In a love story that evokes the blues, where passion and sadness are inevitably intertwined, Baldwin has created two characters so alive and profoundly realized that they are unforgettably ingrained in the American psyche."