Michael Marino’s review published on Letterboxd:
I'm going to come off a bit like a film snob here, but Ma Rainey perfectly showcases being a prime example of what a 7/10 movie amounts to me.
Like, of course, a film like this can only amount to being "good." I mean, it's based on an award-winning play that was written by a great writer, who was known for writing some good ass dialog that was thoroughly reflected out through his actors, who, by my way of view, seemingly only amount to turning out some good ass performances that feel effortless.
As I pretty much had felt the same way with Fences, the previous film based on an August Wilson play adapted for the screen, directed by Denzel Washington.
So onto the performances.
Chadwick Boseman comes off as feeling so effortless here. His performance here is tremendous, and holy hell, it is brutal knowing now that it was throughout the shoot on this film where he would be at his sickest.
At least it's good to know that he will be leaving us with a performance that just so perfectly shows off his acting talents to the fullest, unlike 21 Bridges, and he's undoubtedly going to get a posthumous oscar while we're at it.
And with Viola Davis, nothing much on my mind to say as she rarely turns out on giving a disappointing performance, as, of course, she proceeds to feeling just so effortless here.
That's all. RIP to August Wilson and Chadwick Boseman.
Boy do I wish you were both still here.