Review: Janicza Bravo’s ‘Zola’

Skirting the line between a road trip buddy comedy and a social commentary on sex work, race and social media, Zola is an exciting, albeit frustrating entry to the “social media” genre (which includes titles such as 2021’s Profile and Mainstream). Janicza Bravo’s film was inspired by a 2015 viral Twitter thread from the real-life A'ziah “Zola” King, who chronicled a violent, fraught car trip of two strippers. Despite its artful idiosyncrasies and thrilling story of sex and murder, Zola’s perspectives on sex work, as well as the handling of its titular character, make it an uneven but still worthy watch that falls short of brilliance. Zola begins with a shot of a black woman and a white woman standing side by side, frea
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