Saul Williams and Anisia Uzeyman’s Neptune Frost is a gorgeous, Afrofuturist musical that tells a story of love, loss, and anti-capitalism. With a script by Williams, an actor/poet/playwright whose work defies easy categorization, Neptune Frost is a cultural experience that is open for interpretation while still conveying a specific message about surpassing the boundaries. Uzeyman, a Rwandan actor/playwright/director and the film’s cinematographer, communicates beauty and pain through vibrant colors and beautiful Black skin lit to perfection, with a dizzying array of influences from Sun Ra to Solaris.
Set during an uprising in the hills of Burundi, Neptune Frost follows an intersex runaway on a journey of self-discovery. Neptune (who is played by Elvis Ngabo and then by Cheryl Isheja after the character experiences a near-death transformation) is searching for a place to belong when they meet Matalusa (Kaya Free) in a time and space neither could have imagined. Both outcasts, together they create the power needed for their tribe to survive and thrive, both literally and figuratively. Finding our own identity and the tribe we belong to is something we can all relate to, no matter what country you call home.
Neptune Frost opens today, June 3, 2022
Photo top: Chris SCHWAGGA Courtesy of Kino Lorber