Posted: 11/08/2010



by Elaine Hegwood Bowen

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Nurse.Fighter.Boy is a good indie film about a woman named Jude who loves her son Ciel so much that she finally opens up her heart to love another man, after her hubby’s death. This awakening in her helps her find a peace near the end of her life that transcends to a nurturing relationship between the new man in her life and her son.

This is an urban love story about the soul of a mother, the heart of a fighter and the faith of a child.
The nurse has a dream to take her son to Jamaica to see his father’s gravesite, but she is struggling with sickle cell anemia and a night job that keeps her busy.

The fighter named Silence, played by Homicide’s and The Wire’s Clark Johnson, is at the end of his career, also struggling but to make a living fighting in illegal boxing matches played out in the woods and operated by a man who appears as crooked as the day is long.

Ciel loves music and spends a lot of time praying for his mother and hanging out with the young neighbor girl next door. He lives in a world of dreams but also loves and cares for his mother very much—so much so that Jude is not eager to entertain a man in his life. But Jude really needs a man in her life, as much for her as for the sake of her son.

The film presented by Film Movement brings the three of these people together, after the fighter gets banged up one night and has to visit the emergency room for assistance. The nurse cures his ills, but the two also share a moment of chemistry that they both allow to develop as the movie progresses.

Nurse.Fighter.Boy is set in Toronto, Canada, the birthplace of the director Charles Officer, who wanted to deal with terminal illness, magic and romance.
Officer explains why he was attracted to this movie. “My mom was a nurse and the black men in my world were all deemed as fighters. So I thought of this detached man, who is finally affected by love. People describe love in all kinds of ways, but I think the involuntary part of love is magical. With cinema, especially black cinema, I hardly see any magic. So I really wanted to create a character that kind of resembled me when I was young. I was interested in magic; I always wanted a tough guy to be my dad, I wanted a superhero to look after my mom.”

As I’ve said before, Film Movement films bring the world to your living room. I enjoyed this movie, as well. It sort of brings three sad, isolated souls together. And even though the ending is sad, it seems to me that no one lost out.

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Elaine Hegwood Bowen is an editor, writer and film critic in Chicago.

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