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the angry black girl and her monster

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Bomani J. Story talks ‘The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster’

A cure for death.

The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster is a socially conscious Black horror that made its World Premiere at SXSW. Owing a large debt to Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein, it is topical, filled with great dialogue, and scary. Writer-director Bomani J. Story spoke with AIPT about his young cast, using horror tropes effectively, and family.

AIPT: What was the inspiration behind The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster?  

Bomani J. Story: The inspiration came from a lot of different things, but I’d have to mainly point to my big sisters, and obviously, Mary Shelley. There’s no other way to go around that, but I think those were definitely the two biggest inspirations for this.  

AIPT: There’s primarily young kids in it, but they’re talking very maturely. On the same token, they never lose their childlike innocence or charm. How important was it for you to get that dichotomy across?  

Story: Kids are strange, man. I think a lot of people think they’re just these people just sucking on a lollipop or whatever. I’m not saying nonsensical things, but they start putting things together pretty quick and start becoming pretty perceptive. And to me, I love when kids are pretty perceptive and say outrageous things, and obviously, do outrageous things.  

As an adult, you might hear something, but you’ll be like, “Oh, well, I’m not going to repeat that because of X, Y, and Z, or whatever.” But a kid will hear that and be like, “Well, I’m going to say that,” or, “I’m going to do that.” Because either they don’t understand the ramifications of it or they’re curious. So, for me, it was important to just show all those different colors of children or that shade of it.  

AIPT: Everything takes place primarily in not a single location, but in one area. Why did you decide to go that route? 

Story: Well, it’s a classic horror movie thing. I wanted pay respect to that. I understand the genre I’m playing in. And so, I wanted to play homage of that. 

It’ also an interesting location that was fascinating to be in because it’s just like there’s a lot of horror movies, and then, a lot of them take place in a haunted house or we’re in the suburbs. But I wanted to be in a place where you not usually see horror movies.   

AIPT: You’ve talked about the horror tropes that are in it and the actual horror. There’s classic horror in it, but then, there’s real life horror, and then, there’s just this overriding theme of family throughout the movie. How important was it to mix all those themes together?  

Story: It was crucial. One of the things me and one of my friends that I talk about movies with that we like to say, we’re going to give the audience their medicine inside of a Snickers bar. And when I’m watching movies, I love themes, and I love messages. 

I think it’s important. I think the best stories that are told are entertaining and have some kind of revelation in them, some kind of meaning in them. Those are the best kind of stories.

The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster comes to theaters June 9  

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