892 – Sundance 2022

A still from 892 by Abi Damaris Corbin, an official selection of the U.S. Dramatic Competition at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival. Courtesy of Sundance Institute. Photo by Chris Witt.

892 is just further proof that America as a whole needs to do better when it comes to its veterans after their service career is over.

An American veteran and father, Brian Brown-Easley (John Boyega), is waiting to receive his latest disability check from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Because he owes money somehow, they never bother sending out a check and it only gets worse from here on out. Not receiving the check is the difference between having a roof over Brian’s head and going homeless. The last thing he wants to do is be a bad father to his daughter. You can’t help but feel for him when you know the situation he’s going through. Things should have ended differently but they don’t.

Feeling like he has no other options left, Brian walks right into a Wells Fargo Bank and tells them, “I’ve got a bomb.” Brian dooms himself from the moment he recites those words. Even if he shows remorse for his actions, his fate is sealed. It’s not unfair to say that many other veterans share Brian’s rage. How they work out their rage is the key difference. But at the same time, what 892 shows is the Department of Veterans Affairs failings.

Abi Damaris Corbin delivers an impressive feature debut–one that is a very stressful watch and almost certainly has  audiences sitting on the edge of their seats. This was how it was for me on Friday–although watching from home means a bed in lieu of a couch or chair. But I digress. It should not come down to being in this situation. There’s a lot of bureaucracy at play and nobody should have to deal with this much red tape. American can and should do better and do right by its veterans. I cannot stress it enough! Unfortunately, the film also serves as one of the final appearances from Michael Kenneth Williams.

John Boyega delivers a career-best performance in 892.

DIRECTOR: Abi Damaris Corbin
SCREENWRITERS: Abi Damaris Corbin & Kwame Kwei-Armah
CAST: John Boyega, Nicole Beharie, Olivia Washington, Selenis Leyva, with Connie Britton, Jeffrey Donovan, and Michael Kenneth Williams

892 holds its world premiere during the 2022 Sundance Film Festival in the U.S. Dramatic Competition.

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Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.