Eve's Bayou

'Memory is a selection of images - some elusive, others printed indelibly on the brain. The summer I killed my father, I was ten years old...' Thus Eve, at the beginning of this rich, assured directorial debut, set in a Louisiana backwater. Eve Batiste (Smollett) is second daughter to the elegant Roz (Whitfield) and her husband Louis (Jackson), the popular local doctor. Louis is an effortless charmer, debonair and handsome - that's his trouble. When Eve catches him kissing a woman in the shed, she does her best to block out the memory of this betrayal, but the past is not so easily contained. The film is suffused in a lovely amber light, whence the material slips easily into a spirit world of ghosts, fancy and voodoo curses. Yet the languid air and lazy ambience defuses these 'excessive' elements and keep the focus squarely on character. The female competition for Louis' affections is movingly played out from the youngster's perspective. Writer/director Kasi Lemmons shows sweet judgment here, doesn't caricature or demonise the errant father, and elicits a host of nuanced performances from women of all ages.

Release details

Duration: 108 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Kasi Lemmons
Screenwriter: Kasi Lemmons
Cast: Samuel L Jackson
Lynn Whitfield
Debbi Morgan
Vondie Curtis Hall
Branford Marsalis
Lisa Nicole Carson
Jurnee Smollett
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