Emergency takes what you expect from famous college movies and flips those beats on their head. In the early moments of the film, we imagine we’ll join best friends Sean (RJ Cyler) and Kunle (Donald Elise Watkins) to go on an epic frat party tour they have been planning ahead of graduation, until they are faced with the question of calling the police when they find a girl passed out in their living room. Along the wild ride of the comedy, there were a few things the rising filmmakers intended to highlight with its core friendships.
Emergency originally premiered at Sundance early this year to rave reviews, and the independent film was picked up to be distributed by Amazon Studios. The movie helmed by Carey Williams and written by KD Dávila, both new filmmakers, adapted Emergency from their award-winning 2018 short of the same name. Now that it’s a full-fledged movie, Williams spoke to CinemaBlend about what excited him about returning to the storyline for the film with these words (also in the video above):
In the movie, Sean and Kunle are each nearly polar opposites, with Sean being a more laid back stoner kid, whereas Kunle is razor-focused on his school work and following the rules. The friendship is beautifully fleshed out and authentic, which brings a refreshing quality to the film. When speaking to Emergency, KD Dávila shared her own motivations as the film’s writer:
When Williams previously spoke to CinemaBlend’s podcast ReelBlend about the roots of Emergency, he shared that Dávila wrote the film as a response to her own experiences as a Latina woman, alongside her family and being treated differently throughout her life. According to Williams, the writer had someone she knew who dealt with a similar situation to the film, but she expanded the idea into the movie, which is in select theaters now and will be available to stream with an Amazon Prime subscription this Friday, May 27.
When we spoke to the film’s leads about the friendship at the center of Emergency, Donald Elise Watkins shared his thoughts on what the movie says about friendship through the lens of Sean and Kunle. As he said:
RJ Cyler, who you may remember from Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, 2017’s Power Rangers movie and most recently as part of the cast of Netflix’s The Harder They Fall, echoed some of Watkins statements about the themes of Emergency. In Cyler’s words:
Check out CinemaBlend’s review of Emergency ahead of checking out the film as well, which is not only a great college comedy with a refreshing approach, but a movie that depicts positive friendships between men of color and discusses issues of systematic racism.
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