Like some of you, I have been waiting for this production because I just knew it would be good and after watching it, I was not disappointed. Guava Island is a 55-minute film starring Donald Glover who plays Deni and Rihanna who plays his love interest Kofi. I connected with it because it just reminded me of an enchanting Caribbean story, one that you would read over and over again as a little girl growing up in a similar setting.
As usual, there is a ton of cultural imagery that represents some of the struggles we have here in the United States including exploitation, red and blue divisions and a lot of what Glover has already shared in his hit song This Is America.
Read below via the New York Times:
Guava Island,” a new 55-minute film starring Donald Glover and Rihanna, was released as a limited-time free stream on Amazon overnight Saturday, during Glover’s headlining set as Childish Gambino at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.
The mysterious project, which has been teased for months, features Glover as Deni, a singer hoping to bring the mystical island of Guava together with a music festival, while Rihanna plays his girlfriend, Kofi, and provides voice-over during a fairy-tale-like animated introduction about the fictional location and its valuable blue silk. Nonso Anozie (“Game of Thrones”) and Letitia Wright (“Black Panther”) also appear.
With a plot involving exploited workers, the struggles of musicians and a society divided between red and blue, the film incorporates themes present in much of Glover’s recent work, from the hit FX series “Atlanta” to his viral, Grammy-winning song and video for “This Is America,” which is interpolated in “Guava Island.”
The film was written by Glover’s brother Stephen and directed by his longtime collaborator Hiro Murai, who was also behind the camera for much of “Atlanta” and “This Is America.” Following its premiere on the grounds of Coachella on Thursday, and the Childish Gambino show on Friday night, “Guava Island” was made available for anyone to watch on Amazon for 18 hours starting Saturday at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time; it will then be available exclusively to Amazon Prime subscribers.
I wrote on Instagram that the film made me a little sad because from my perspective and just looking at it literally when you are raised on an island you are often raised to believe that “America is better”. You spend your whole life dreaming about leaving and then you leave and spend the rest of your life plotting on how you can go back. Back to the island where things seem better and simpler.
Did y’all watch #guavaisland ? I liked it! @childishgambino never disappoints and @badgalriri was perfect.. not to give away anything but it kinda made me sad a bit because for some of us from the islands…you are raised to think that what you have right there isn’t “everything” that there is a whole world out there that’s better than what you have.. so you spend your life dreaming about leaving. Then you leave and end up spending the rest of your life wishing you could go back ? Out now on @amazonprimevideo
You should watch it if you can, let me know what you think when you do!