A woman takes a selfie of herself and another woman in front of a beauty mirror.
Part of the series CANCELED: MoMA Contenders 2021

CANCELED: Zola, with Janicza Bravo & Riley Keough

  • This is a past program
This program has been canceled.

“Y’all wanna hear a story about why me & this bitch here fell out?? It’s kinda long but full of suspense,” begins the viral 2015 Twitter thread by A’Ziah “Zola” King, chronicling a dizzying 48-hour odyssey from Detroit to Florida. Just a day after meeting, Stefani (Riley Keough) convinces Zola (Taylour Paige) to head south on a “hoe trip” with the promise of a lucrative night of dancing, which quickly turns bust. The feverish journey is adapted for the screen by Janicza Bravo and Jeremy O. Harris, and it is Bravo’s thoroughly modern direction—with it’s formal pop flourish, singular sound design, and intent gaze on Zola’s perfect eye rolls—that captures the social media rhythm in a way few other directors have. The ever unpredictable journey is rife with power dynamics, race, and sex, but Bravo keeps it all neatly tucked in its candy-colored wrapper. (Courtesy A24)

(2021, dir. Janicza Bravo, color, 90 min.)

This film program is organized by Rajendra Roy, The Celeste Bartos Chief Curator of Film, and Sean Egan, Producer, Film Exhibitions and Special Projects, The Museum of Modern Art, New York.
The Hammer Museum's presentation is made possible by The Billy and Audrey L. Wilder Foundation.