Photo Courtesy of Warner Bros.Pictures
The epic drama about Serena and Venus Williams’ rise to fame “King Richard” came out on Friday, Nov. 19. Filled with humor, sadness and gripping reality, “King Richard” raises awareness about the two most famous tennis players of our time.
The story follows Serena and Venus Williams as children training and practicing to become the talented tennis players they are today. With unfaltering faith in them, their father, Richard, is their coach and takes them through drills and practices in their rundown court in Compton.
Social unrest and crime is taking place in their community, yet the Williams seem to be unaffected. Facing discrimination, racism and financial problems, the two sisters struggle to integrate into the professional tennis leagues. After relentless persistence and astonishing performances of skill, the sisters finally dominate the ametaur tennis competitions, Venus especially.
Will Smith does a wonderful job at portraying Richard. Spending weeks teaching himself to get the correct accent, Will Smith’s dedication and passion for this role shines through the screen. The casting director Rich Delia perfectly matched the actors to their real-life characters. The resemblance was uncanny and added to the storytelling.
Playing Venus Williams, Sinyya Sidney, delivers an impressive performance. Only fifteen years old, Sidney’s acting performance matches those of twice her age. The way Sidney portrayed the obsession and passion of the character’s love towards tennis is intense and academy award winning. I was truly awed by her performance and felt every emotion she gave to the audience.
Touching on the racism and discimination of the tennis organizations, “King Richard ” inspires young black women in the sports industry to follow their dreams regardless of push back from others. The hard work of these two powerhouse sisters is shown in more depth with the creation of this movie.
A harsh past to the fame and fortune of their present, “King Richard ” follows the untold story of the childhood that shaped the sisters into who they are now. The family dynamic in “King Richard” is loving and supportive. Relatable to many POC families, it creates more inspiration for young viewers.
The realistic portrayal of life in Compton during the 90s further adds to how hard these two sisters had to work. Multiple messages about individualism and confidence are embedded into this movie that can touch anyone in the audience.
For a movie about Serena and Venus Williams, I found the story to be more centered towards Venus. The story tracked the multiple successes of Venus and the path she left for Serena to follow. Not necessarily a documentary, it stops after the Wimbledon match that showcased Venus’ talent.
Running two hours and 24 minutes, it dragged in some parts and then picked up to an intense conclusion. The emotional scenes and monolouges that are scattered throughout are professionally executed and pull the audience’s heart strings.
Rated PG-13, this movie is available now in theaters and is a wonderful movie to watch with friends and appropriate age family members. “King Richard” is a beautifully crafted portrayal of Serena and Venus Willliams’ life and I think everyone should watch it if they can. The acting was polished and skillful and the storyline was captivating. “King Richard” should be in consideration for an Academy Award.