By Merle Bertrand | April 13, 1998

Even though, as a white guy, it’s all too easy to forget that African-Americans have prejudices as well, Kenneth Jones’ fine “Love and Fate” does an excellent job of reminding us of that. In this case, a young black man forced to place his elderly father in a mental institution, even though he despises “those people,” vows to get his dad out of the home as soon as possible. Then he meets and falls in love with an attractive woman he assumes is a nurse at the home but who is, in actuality, herself one of “those people.”
Terrified of another rejection – being dumped by a former lover prompted the suicide attempt that led to her being in the home in the first place – she enlists the engaging, diverse, and refreshingly non-exploitative other residents to help her extend her charade. Of course, the ruse can’t continue forever and the man must confront his prejudices or lose the woman of his dreams.
If you believed Hollywood, you’d swear that all African-Americans live in the ‘hood. Thus, it was great to see a “black” film shattering Hollywood’s one-dimensional stereotypes. In fact, “Love and Fate’s” loving depiction of small town black southern life was one of the more compelling features of Jones’ film; a mature and honest piece of work.

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