It takes but two minutes of runtime for Queen & Slim to convince you you’re going to have a heart-wrenching, transformative film experience.

Co-writer Lena Waithe has been breaking down barriers and highlighting racial tensions for years in series The Chi, but she holds a mirror to our society in a way no other writer had this decade with this film.

A Bonnie & Clyde road trip story flipped on its head, this tale of a terrible first date that ends with the twosome on the run from the law is captivating in every sense of the word.

When a traffic stop by a racist officer ends with his own death, religious Slim and attorney Queen are forced to flee, knowing arrest or death is soon to follow if they’re caught by police in a system who shoot first and ask questions later.

Fraught with racial tension and outrage over real-life shootings of unarmed, innocent black men by police officers U.S.-wide, this film feels far more real than it should.

With the crackerjack script, a formidable performance from Oscar nominee Daniel Kaluuya, and a turn from newcomer Jodie Turner-Smith that’s jaw-dropping, this is one of the best of the year.

The only thing that surpasses the leads is a key supporting performance from Bokeem Woodbine as Uncle Earl, Iraq war veteran turned half-baked pimp, and relative of Queen’s.

This is one of the most difficult, controversial films of the year, and is required viewing, as far as this critic is concerned.