The Inkwell

Director: Matty Rich
Screenwriters: Paris Qualles, Tom Ricostranza

Institute History

  • 1994 Sundance Film Festival


The young Matty Rich made such a splash with his first film Straight out of Brooklyn. It's no surprise that his new effort reaffirms his talent and original vision. The Inkwell is a continuation for Rich, but also a departure dealing With more mature themes. both political and personal. this film is a sincere exploration of human relationships. Rich should be applauded for his success in keeping his characters specific and choosing not to present the African-Americans in this story as symbols of an entire race. This is a very special family who happen to be African Americans.
but they are not defined by their ethnicity.

Drew (Larenz Tale) is a shy and confused teenager who accidentally sets his home on fire while conducting an experiment Feeling that Drew needs a break from the city and its limited experiences. the family decides to spend part of the summer on Martha's Vineyard. where Drew's aunt and uncle have a house Neither Drew nor his father is even slightly excited. and they mount a fight against everything from their relatives to the sand on the beach. The two families have been estranged for years, clashing in every way. Drew's dad is an ex-Black Panther and committed liberal while his aunt and uncle are materialistic Republicans. Still, the stereotypes stop here The vacation begins as a battle of wills but ends as a celebration of acceptance. In the process, Drew breaks out of his shell, discovering many of life's greatest secrets—self-love, nature, and sex.

Set in the seventies. The Inkwell reveals a world of African-American experience many of us may be totally unaware of. One section of Martha's Vineyard was settled by African-Americans. and the famous "Inkwell" was an all-black beach community The pleasures that resulted from more relaxed civil rights enabled some people to embrace freely the pleasures of capitalism. while others were wary. The Inkwell is an insightful look al this time and place as well as a cheerful bit of nostalgia. A great seventies' sound track and wild costume design add to the fun. Strong performances all around draw you in and keep you hooked.

Tuesday Jan 25 1:00 pm
Egyptian Theatre

Wednesday Jan 26 12:30 pm
Park City Library Center


— Catherine Schulman

Screening Details

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