Belle, directed by Amma Asante and written by Misan Sagay is truly a beautiful film that is well-worth seeing.
Based on a true story, the action takes place from approximately 1769 to 1779 in England. A mulatto young girl is placed in the custody of her aristocratic uncle by her father, who is an Admiral in the Royal Navy.
Gugu Mbatha-Raw plays Dido Elizabeth Belle and does so, expertly, exuding passion and depth. Tom Wilkinson plays her uncle, Lord Mansfield, who is the equivalent of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
The bulk of the action takes place when Lord Mansfield must make a decision in the Zong Affair, which was a seminal case leading to abolishing the slave trade in England…a time when the plight of women was akin to the plight of African slaves.
Cinematographer Ben Smithard offers up some of the most beautiful images you’ve seen, taking full advantage of Production Designer Simon Bowles’ exquisite sets.
Belle is movie-making at its finest. I give it a 4+ out of 5.