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Pariah [Blu-ray] (2011)

Adepero Oduye , Pernell Walker , Dee Rees  |  R |  Blu-ray
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Adepero Oduye, Pernell Walker, Aasha Davis, Kim Wayans
  • Directors: Dee Rees
  • Writers: Dee Rees
  • Producers: Nekisa Cooper, Spike Lee
  • Format: Blu-ray, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1)
  • Subtitles: French, Spanish
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • DVD Release Date: April 24, 2012
  • Run Time: 87 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005S9EINI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #97,872 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Pariah [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Kim Wayans, Adepero Oduye, Aasha Davis and Charles Parnell star in Dee Rees’s inspiring film that critics hail is “Vibrantly alive! Potently moving and heartfelt!” (Peter Travers, Rolling Stone). Seventeen-year-old Alike (pronounced ah-lee-kay) lives with her parents and younger sister in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood. She has a flair for poetry, and is quietly embracing her identity as a lesbian. But whenever Alike's development becomes a topic of discussion at home, her parents’ already strained marriage is pushed to the breaking point. Wondering how much she can confide in her family, Alike strives to get through adolescence with grace, humor, and tenacity – sometimes succeeding, sometimes not, but always moving forward.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Intense family drama March 11, 2012
"Pariah" (90 min.) brings the story of Alike (played by Adepero Oduye), a 17 yr. old girl living with her younger sister and her mom and dad. Alike is discovering that she likes girls better than guys. Alike's mom picks up on the fact that Alike is going through a "tomboy" phase, and is urging dad to do something about it. Dad, however, has his own problems (the movie shows a short phone call that one might interpret he has another lady in his world) and besides (as he says) "Alike is always daddy's girl". Needless to say, a lot of tension builds up between mom and dad and Alike. To reveal more from the plot would spoil the pleasure of watching this movie, you'll just have to see how it all plays out.

A lot has been made of the fact that this is a movie about a "black teenage girl coming out". I guess I really don't see at all what the relevance is, if any, of the race or color in this movie. What I saw was an intense family drame, set in contemporary Brooklyn, New York. It's not even so much a "lesbian" movie. I came away impressed by the fact that this is writer-director Dee Rees' debute film, as the movie certainly doesn't feel like the work of a novice.

There are a number of acting performances worth noting, none more so of course than Adepero Oduye in the role of Alike, but also Kim Wayans as Alike's mom and Charles Parnell as Alike's dad. Last but not least, there was plenty of great music featured in the movie (unfortunately the credits went by so quickly I barely had time to register all the music that was featured, although I did notice that Reema Major has 5 or so songs credited). In all, I thought that "Pariah" was well worth it, and I would readily recommend this if you are looking for something good to watch outside the Hollywood commercial mainstream.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Striking Debute March 6, 2012
Pariah is a powerful first film by an emerging director, Dee Reese, well acted by a wonderful ensemble of actors, and beautifully and evocatively shot by Director of Photography Bradfford Young. Certainly the story is one that is not widely present within contemporary cinematic culture, but the film stands on its own as a powerful piece of work, not merely a sociological footnote. The true brilliance of this movie is the way in which the visual experience wraps itself around the film's narrative. The camera work alone is truly groundbreaking and original, creating a consistently shallow sense of visual space that directs and redirects our attention in ways that allows us to experience the world intimately through the eyes of the young protagonist.

This is a film that should have received a wider screening than it did. That it was critically hailed was well deserved. That it is now available on DVD is truly cause for celebration. Buy this film, and keep your eyes and heart wide open while watching it.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected Brilliance May 1, 2012
Simply put, I was blown away by this "little" (note quotes) film. I just did not expect this level of refinement, character development, cinematography, direction, etc. Me, a 49-year-old, cynical, AA male that thought he's "seen it all", going back over 30 years, in terms of "indie movies". Dee Rees: If you ever need funding for your next project (you shouldn't) give me a "ring". A brilliant, very well-acted, touching, sensitive piece of work. The cinematography (Bradford Young) was amazing, haunting....I am a genuine fan of Ms. Adepero Oduye and kudos to Ms. Wayans for taking this serious role. Pernell Walker was effective, yet understated in her role; the handsome, ultra-competent Charles Parnell was a revelation and left me wondering: "Why haven't I seen this magnetic dude in other films?"
I even went out had bought the soundtrack and fell in love with Honeychild Melon ("Echelon"), Apollo Heights ("Dress You Up") and Kandi Cole, etc. Wow.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Lesbian Movie From the Black Perspective May 3, 2012
A nicely written and acted tale of a 17-year-old girl by the name of Alike who goes through the hardships of being a lesbian teen and dealing with her ongoing homelife. As a black lesbian I'm happy to see there is a black film aimed in a serious way on a LGBT-subject without comic relief. Adepero Oduye, an actress I never heard of until this film, challenges her character well in this heartfelt role. Kim Wayans, someone who most of us grew up laughing at thanks to 'In Living Color' also plays the overprotective mother of Alike and also deals with a struggling marriage. Though this is a slow burn movie, the storytelling does a good enough job getting it's point across. I liked it and hoped many will be open in taking a look at Pariah.

Rating - 3.5/5
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie May 27, 2012
By Nay
Format:Amazon Instant Video|Verified Purchase
This movie was so good it had parts of my life in here, helk anyone who is in the lgbtq community knows someone or has been through that type situation. I hope to see more films that show "our" life all the actors did great and I will def be buying the dvd. :)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Coming of Age Classic Movie May 27, 2012
This movie has surely captured my soul. It is a miracle of a movie in a way that it highlighted the raw life and struggles of Alike. Immediately it reminded me of the book Dying To Be Straight! in the way that it showed the pain of the main character Alike as she struggles and gripes with the issues of Lesbianism through the eyes of a mother who is super religious. Rarely have I seen such a movie that not only brings to light a complex social issue such as homosexuality, but a movie that goes into the heart of a situation that is rarely spoken of in Black America. The only recent movie that I could compare that deals with the social crisis of Pariah has to be Precious.
There was bad lighting in a few parts of the movie on the production end. But as far as the screen play itself, the screen play was superb, it's surely worth renting or purchasing this movie.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite films of all time
This movie is so well-made, and so compelling - it falls into the category of my favorite movies of all time. Read more
Published 22 days ago by Consumer Adphawkit
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best movies of 2013!
This coming of age story never fells to deliver. Oduye gives a strong, convincing and award worthy performance. I can't wait to see more from her.
Published 26 days ago by Ronald E. Spencer
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth every positive review
I was hesitant to watch Pariah because I was afraid I wouldn't be able to relate to the black Lesbian experience as a gay black man. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Rashid Darden
4.0 out of 5 stars very good movie
Very well written and directed addresses issues facing a lot of young kids both inner city and in rural areas
Published 1 month ago by hilitermom
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly a good film
Yes ii don't watch very many lesbian films but this one, is amazing the young lady is coming out in an African American family and it's tough for her. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Timpee
5.0 out of 5 stars Must See!
I Loved the story line & the actors really played their role well. It wsd a great movie overall! Kim Wayans was allsome!
Published 2 months ago by Dawn
5.0 out of 5 stars be who you are
Having a number of family members and best friends who are gay and not ashamed to admit it I feel that this movie shows how at times the difficultly in coming out to family and... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Darryl Brandon Payne
5.0 out of 5 stars must see
This film was very well written and produced. Finally a film that is culturally relevant and a film that most African Americans can relate too.
Published 2 months ago by hard at work
5.0 out of 5 stars Truth
Great movie. Truest story to so many in the life. It only gets better once we realize approval isn't needed to survive. Maybe desired but not required. Read more
Published 3 months ago by LJay
5.0 out of 5 stars This film is about the life of many lesbians struggling with their...
I saw this movie once @ the Red Box and was floored by it. I did not know where I could find it.Excellent condition! A must see!! Great movie!!
Published 4 months ago by Maria Johnson
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