The Weekend

The Weekend follows comedian Zadie (Sasheer Zamata) as she and an ex-boyfriend (Tone Bell’s Bradford) (and his new girlfriend) head to her mother’s (Kym Whitley) bed and breakfast for a few days, with the narrative detailing the conflict and complications that ensues between the various characters (with the appearance of a hunky guest named Aubrey (Y’Lan Noel) undoubtedly adding more fuel to the fire). Filmmaker Stella Meghie kicks The Weekend off with a strained, unfunny standup set from Zamata’s character that instantly sets a tone of forced artificiality, with this vibe persisting for the duration of the proceedings and preventing the viewer from working up much interest in the protagonists’ ongoing exploits. It’s clear, too, that Zamata’s disappointingly ineffective turn as the abrasive central character plays a significant role in confirming the movie’s downfall, as the actress proves hopelessly unable to transform Zadie into a compelling (or even convincing) figure – with the stilted feel compounded by Meghie’s emphasis on dialogue that could hardly feel more mechanical and mannered. And although the picture’s not entirely devoid of small pleasures – eg there is, for example, a strong sequence in which a character emotionally confronts another – The Weekend‘s pervasively flat and stagnant atmosphere ultimately does render its few positive attributes moot. (The movie’s failure is especially disappointing given Meghie’s strong work with 2017’s Everything, Everything.)

** out of ****

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