“A portrait captures a person far better than a photograph. It truly takes a human being to really see a human being.”

Lawrence Musgrove

A richly textured character drama set in the Deep South, Monster’s Ball is unafraid to portray human relationships and bigotry as messy without straightforward labels or easy resolution. Billy Bob Thornton and Halle Berry exude raw emotion as the broken Hank and Leticia, whose relationship is one less of desire than of need, rooted in a shared sense of loneliness, grief and guilt. The two exist largely in parallel, recognising each other’s pain but rarely discussing their pasts in detail. Whilst they are connected by an unlikely coincidence, the script deftly avoids the expected tropes, which provides a more poignant conclusion, albeit one that may leave some viewers frustrated.