2022 ( USA ) ( Action, Drama, History )
Starring: Viola Davis, Thuso Mbedu, Lashana Lynch
Director: Gina Prince-Bythewood
The Woman King tells a true story, that of a regiment of fierce female warriors in the African kingdom of Dahomey, now a region of Benin, set against a backdrop of the slave trade in the 1820s. Viola Davis stars as Nanisca, the leader of this army of fearsome female warriors. With a newly ascendant king (played by John Boyega), Nanisca wants to use her experience and influence to extract Dahomey from the slave trade by convincing the king to export palm oil instead of people, something that will also require breaking Dahomey’s ties with the Oyo Empire, which bolsters its riches by working with European traders.
The Woman King is the kind of historical epic that just doesn’t get made any more. Muscular in its action sequences, sweeping in scope, this action-packed thriller is a prime candidate for this year’s Best Picture award.