Vicky Wright has created a character that most women and possibly men can relate to and the role was filled by a black woman. I made it a point to say that because there has been a lot of talk in the media about “black themed” films being successful. As if it is damn near impossible for a film with a predominately black cast to be successful since no one other than black people can relate to and enjoy the stories being told on the screen that use black actors and actresses to fill major roles. This is obviously a complete insult especially since the films that have been released are not “race themed” films, they just happen to star a roster of black talent. So I would invite the media to stop using the term and consider instead the story and plot elements as opposed to the skin color of the main cast when thinking of a way to describe these films.
That’s enough, I’m getting off my soap box so that I can talk about what I intended to and that is the extremely complicated character of Leigh in The Volunteer. Leigh is seemingly at a crossroads with her life…she is completely burnt out at her job and is drowning in depression. In an effort to find to possibly find herself and some clarity, she volunteers at a soup kitchen. Where she meets and eventually enters into an affair with a homeless man, Ethan.
I say that this character is relate-able to anyone because I think there is a massive epidemic of people who are lost and are in shitty careers just trying to stay sane and they happen to be all sorts of different types of races…this is why it makes no difference that the woman portraying Leigh is a black woman. This is story with elements that a lot of people know all to well.