New thriller ‘Antebellum’ uses time-shifting story to explore horrors of slavery

“Antebellum” is the time traveling story from hell. The movie takes a modern-day Black woman and drops her on a Southern plantation in the age of slavery. Alex Miranda is here to show us her battle to help others and get home.

The new thriller “Antebellum” will take you back in place, but not exactly in time. I know that’s a little confusing but, trust me, you’ll see what I mean when you watch this cautionary tale of a movie starring the incomparable Janelle Monáe.

The past and the future are all preset in the new psychological horror-thriller “Antebellum.”

Janelle Monáe plays successful author Veronica Henley, whose worst nightmare is not the kind you can just wake up from, and is plucked straight out of the history books.

Janelle Monáe: “The original sin in America is slavery. When you talk about Black people, there is nothing more horrific, in my opinion, than when they took my ancestors and forced us into this country.”

Which leads me to Jena Malone’s character. I can’t say much, but let me just tell you, she’ll have you looking at the people around you twice.

Jena Malone: “I think what this film does well is, it really builds that bridge between where we are now to where we were 400 years ago.”

Gabourey Sidibe says it’ll be eye-opening and, hopefully, mind-expanding.

Alex Miranda: “So what kind of an effect, Gaby, do you think this film will have on the people who watch it? Because it really does make you think.”

Gabourey Sidibe: “The thing about the film is, I’m a Black girl. If you think I haven’t experienced this or been afraid to experience this, then that’s insane. So what it does is, it brings the audience who might not be completely Black and understand what this experience is like.”

It’s also going to be uncomfortable, and that’s why Janelle told me this role was especially meaningful for her to take on.

Janelle Monáe: “The truth is going to be ugly. The truth is going to be triggering. The truth is something that I honor, and so I tried my best every day I walked on set to honor my ancestors. I felt them guiding me.”

Oh, and writer-director duo Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz have one thing to add.

Christopher Renz: “We lived down in Miami for 10 years. We’re huge Deco Drive fans, and we love Shireen Sandoval.

You can watch “Antebellum” at home on demand this Friday.

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