Something New (PG)

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The Independent Culture

Sanaa Latham is a repressed, workaholic accountant who decorates her house entirely in beige. Simon Baker is an insufferably laid-back landscape gardener who professes to "take hard earth and make things bloom". That in itself would be enough of a mismatch for most Hollywood romances, but in Something New there's a bigger issue. She's black and he's white, which, in American movie terms, means that theirs is the love that dare not speak its name.

Latham's friends' reactions to her new man range from suspicion to downright hostility, while Baker struggles to appreciate the institutional racism she pushes against on a daily basis. Refreshingly, the film has no contrived misunderstandings or quick fixes, just the affecting quandary of two adults who are forced to confront social pressures and their own prejudices. That really is something new.

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