Demetrios Matheou

On screen, on stage, out and about

Demetrios Matheou

December 26th, 2020
Lovers Rock


A pure, joyous, revelatory piece of filmmaking 

  • Dec 26, 2020
  • walterburns
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  • Films, Reviews

The second in Steve McQueen’s Small Axe films about West Indian experience in the UK has a radical simplicity. For the majority of its 70 minutes, Lovers Rock is, literally, a house party, in West London in 1980. But within this seemingly narrow construct McQueen offers a love story, a vibrant depiction of a little-recorded cultural phenomenon and an intensely immersive celebration of some glorious dance music. The “blues parties” were a popular  way for Black people to enjoy themselves without the racial abuse that welcomed them in clubs. After the amusing transformation of a large house into party venue, cheerful DJs preside over a feast of reggae, disco and dub, as passion, menace and family drama play out on and around their dance floor. As the new lovers leave the party in the dawn, for the film’s coda in the outside world, we also feel that calm buzz that comes after a great night out.  A pure, joyous, revelatory piece of filmmaking.