The Inspection

Ellis French is a young, gay Black man, rejected by his mother and with few options for his future, decides to join the Marines, doing whatever it takes to succeed in a system that would cast him aside. But even as he battles deep-seated prejudice and the grueling routines of basic training, he finds unexpected camaraderie, strength, and support in this new community, giving him a hard-earned sense of belonging that will shape his identity and forever change his life.

  • Released: 2022-11-18
  • Runtime: 95 minutes
  • Genre: Drama
  • Stars: Jeremy Pope, Gabrielle Union, Bokeem Woodbine, Raúl Castillo, McCaul Lombardi, Nicholas Logan, Aaron Dominguez, Eman Esfandi, Aubrey Joseph, Andrew Kai, Tyler Merritt, Steve Mokate, Brad Napp, Daniel Williamson, Wynn Reichert
  • Director: Elegance Bratton
  • martinpersson97 - 27 October 2023
    Stellar underdog drama
    This stellar drama by the ever great independent studio A24 is very much worthy of its anticipation and hype, and all that I regret is that I was not able to see it in a theater where it belongs.

    It features some truly incredible acting, very riveting and emotional in every sense of the word. The script is also great and accompines it all gracefully, very subtle and very masterfully put together by a true master.

    The cinematography, cutting and editing is great, and it is all around very beautifully put together.

    And most of all, the film showcases some important messages that are not to be missed, and they are all very well handled.

    Highly recommended for any lover of film!
  • nogodnomasters - 3 March 2023
    Boot Camp did not make me Straight
    Ellis French (Jeremy Pope) is a gay man disowned by his own overly religious mother (Gabrielle Union). He has been living in the streets of NY for five years. He returns home to get his birth certificate so he can join the Marines which seems like ruse, but it was not. French does well in boot camp until he showers with the guys and has a physical reaction that outs him. He is roughed up but persists. There are many who want to see him fail while he has a gay friend (Raúl Castillo) who understands his situation and helps him through. His boot camp commander (Bokeem Woodbine) wants him to be a mean monster as this is post 9-11 or to fail.

    This was the beginning of tolerance of gays in a "don't ask, don't tell" policy, but we already know. It shows a microcosm of how the military transitioned during this era.

    Guide: F-word. Sex and nudity (mostly in a watched film)
  • brentsbulletinboard - 26 November 2022
    An Outstanding Directorial Debut
    Finding one's family may not always occur where one most likely expects it. For many of us, that typically comes with our blood relations. But sometimes circumstances arise that prevent that from happening, as is the case for a twentysomething gay Black man (Jeremy Pope) who has been on his own since age 16 when his close-minded single mother (Gabrielle Union) forced him out onto the streets to fend for himself. And, after years of bouncing around aimlessly, he decides to try getting his act together by joining the Marines, a seemingly unlikely choice but one that unwittingly helps him find what he's been looking for all along. Writer-director Elegance Bratton's fact-based debut narrative feature tells a compelling story of acceptance among those from whom it might least be expected and its absence where one would think it should most likely be present. The film's superb Independent Spirit Award-nominated performances by Pope and Union, along with fine supporting portrayals turned in by other members of the excellent ensemble cast (most notably Bokeem Woodbine and Raúl Castillo), truly give this picture its razor-sharp edge and its touching moments of heartfelt compassion, an unusual mix of elements on the same story, to be sure. In several regards, "The Inspection" also echoes groundbreaking themes first addressed in "Moonlight" (2016), though with slightly different but nevertheless equal significance. Admittedly, the production could probably benefit from a little more back story development and slightly brisker pacing in the first half-hour, but those are truly minor shortcomings in the greater scheme of things where this film is concerned. If this ISA candidate for best first feature is any indication of what we can expect in future works from this filmmaker, I can't wait to see what else he comes up with.