Fences

Drama • PG-13 • Directed by: Denzel Washington • 139 minutes

Some people build fences to keep people out - and other people build fences to keep people in. Academy Award winner® Denzel Washington and Academy Award nominee® Viola Davis deliver the year’s most powerful performances in the film adaptation of August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Fences. Set in 1950s Pittsburgh, the film takes a passionate look at former Negro-league baseball player Troy Maxson (Washington) as he fights to provide for those he loves in a world that threatens to push him down. Washington’s directorial triumph pulses with the universal truths of love, forgiveness, and happiness despite what lies beyond your own fence.

Viewer reviews

Wow
★★★★★
This is such an emotional movie with shocking turn of events and the ending was pretty shocking put heartfelt — VHSfhdh3

Garbage
★★★★
Garbage ..... don't waste your cash — Boycottgrubhub

Best movie of 2016
★★★★★
The most nuanced and well preformed movie I have seen in a while. A stellar script made captivating by Davis' and Washington's outstanding performances. It seems all the bad reviews stem from people going into the movie with the wrong expectations. To be clear, the cover only shows one side of the movie (whether that's because of marketing, irony, or an attempt at capturing the film's final tone, I don't know) be warned that this is not a "feel good" movie in the traditional sense. It's complicated and multifaceted, much like real life. In the end, that is what I enjoyed most about the film: its relatability. The film is absent of shining armored knights, and instead chooses to show us all the characters' weaknesses and faults. While raw and, at times, uncomfortable the movie does offer a glimmer of hope's, if only that in watching it, the audience is told that they are not alone. — {AJ}

Fences
★★★★
Repetitive. Painfully boring. Over-acting. — brendan1847

Yup
★★★★
Boring — yea rite

TOUCHING
★★★★★
Acting was outstanding, the story was great, I cried like a baby on the last scene Not an action film so pay attention to the dialogs — City212chick212

Gut Wrenching Emotion
★★★★★
Mr. Washington and Ms. Davis tore into my heart with their visceral performances and pulled me into an emotional abyss. At the end of this superb film I felt emotionally exhausted, physically drained. It took me a couple of hours to gather myself. It was so impacting. This is what outstanding acting performances do and the cast made this perhaps the best film I have seen in years. I believe Mr. Washington’s portrayal of Troy Maxson is his career best and that’s saying a lot. — gortmull

Excellent from start to finish
★★★★★
This is a movie I washed every American - of any color - should see. Pints made were special and gives deep insights into what many American fail to understand about how our society is stitched together by wonderful people like these. My wife and I watched and cared with tears and was impressed with all the actors. We're white people and want to thank all the people who made this. One of the best films ever. — Mac Old Timer

Fences
★★★★★
Great movie. Very entertaining without all of the blood and guts. — DizzieDeb

Slow and Sad
★★★★
This movie was not a tear jerker, did not have any comedic moments, did not once offer hope, and it made me mad at his wife for sticking around. Boring, dry, and a waste of time — kaleidoscope1122

Not a fan
★★★★★
I was very excited to see this movie, but was left confused and bored throughout the majority. The story initially drew me in but the movie was slow and awkward starting with the very first scene. — Disappointed Dana

That movie was amazing!
★★★★★
Storyline, powerful! Acting, awesome! All is well that's done by Denzel! — GranGran's Girl

Wow.
★★★★★
Looked boring but my wife rented and I wasn't doing anything so I thought I'd see if it was decent and don't know that I took a breath during the entire film. Washington has always been a decent actor but this is the type of movie you watch and respect his ability as a true legend. Great story, great acting, great...you get the point. Highly recommend, can't wait for the rest of the series but they're going to need to have real unicorns to top this. — seanhrpro

Way too Slow
★★★★★
Would have shut this movie off way before the end if I had not paid to rent it.. Great acting ..but oh my god so so slow..wish the trailer had been longer... Just not my cup of tea — Windshieldguy

Horrible
★★★★
This movie had no point whatsoever and has no action. You have to be on your toes to even understand half of what they are saying. I do not recommend this at all. — BigJayWork

Another 'Color Purple'.
★★★★★
I thought the struggle and relationships would win out to provide a sense of redemption or hope...but the movie was reminiscing on the many past of black folks sense of a broken identity in family structure. We are tired of movies like 'Precious' and 'Color Purple' , great acting or not.This movie misdirects a person who may need encouragement to get out of a hole, not drag everybody down in it. — THBoman

Just Bad
★★★★
Very bad horrible movie way too much anger not pleasant to watch. Stopped the movie after 45 mins we couldn't take it anymore, would love to get my money back. — gypsywyo

Disappointed!
★★★★
I saw this movie thinking it was going to be good. Viola Davis is amazing in this film and she was the reason why I saw this movie. Denzel Washington did an amazing job because I HATED his character in this movie. Thinking it would get better and only for it too get so much worse. I had an amazing time watching Passengers (that twist though!), Assassin's Creed (meh an okay movie) and of course Fantastic Beasts (very long movie but amazing!!). I was left so angry with this film that I was glad I didn't buy it on blu-ray (saved $20 to buy another movie woohoo!). So people will like it, but if you are like me and that supports equality you will HATE this movie and yes I know the movie took place in the 50's but it could have been better if "Troy" owned up too his mistakes and there were many! — Al3xVU

This is such a good movie.
★★★★★
Fences was about some black people and I heard that it was good to watch for teens. I watched it this afternoon with my parents and it looks good. — Jolovesgum

Great movie
★★★★
We loved the movie.struggle of three generations . Denzel deserved Oscar award for both direction and acting. Heart warming gorgeous movie what break when we are bombarded with alien and space movie not real life movie. CB Lokesh Alphareetta — Loke Alpharetta Ga

Chad Stanley
★★★★
Literally, the worst movie I have ever seen. Please, please, please do not waste your money or time watching this ridiculously boring and poorly written movie. Besides there being absolutely nothing interesting in the first hour, you have to hear the "N"-word about 65 times in that hour. Absolutely ignorant. I love Denzel as an actor and the way he conducts himself with the media and the public. However, I am truly disappointed that he chose to participate in such a terrible film. — Chad "Wick" Stanley

I wasted my $5.99
★★★★★
watched for about 25 min and was so dis-interested in his ramblings that I turned it off. Felt like a stage play just put on the big screen. — Lo421

A WASTE OF TIME
★★★★★
Three of us watched this. Three of us waited for it to catch. Three of us sat at the end of it and wondered what the point was. Although the acting was excellent - the story was lacking. — ALLSMALL1

Emotional, powerful, and brilliant
★★★★★
A beautiful adaptation of the famous play, I was constantly wowed by the cast and the way they embodied this story. Sure, the movie is not uplifting but that is because it is real. Highly recommend. — Squid0110

Good Play but fair movie
★★★★
Didn't like this, hard to watch. — Samnotafan

An actor's movie
★★★★
If you like good theatrical acting, this is the movie for you. This is a universal story of every family or ethnic group who has ever struggled for their existence and to find their way through limitations imposed outside their control or became self-imposed. However, for those who like entertainment for a brief respite from reality, this movie is not for youl. — EConrad

Waste of a Life
★★★★
Though I love the cast in this movie, it is racist and cliched, and a total waste of what little time we have on this planet. I feel like I need a shower. I also feel like I should get my $5 back. This film sucked! — windowsnomo

Relates Most To African Americans
★★★★★
The ones who give it poor reviews are whites, and that's because Denzel used alot of anecdoting and slain that would make caucasians upset. So be it. For African Americans, especially for this successful African American who saw his father run out at the age of 13, hits home. This is exactly what happened during Antwone Fisher 15 years ago; and out of all the movies I've seen over the years, onyl two have made me cry. This and Antwone. Breathtaking performances and idealistic to say the least. — RicanInThailand

Good acting
★★★★
Tl;dr: don't watch it's boring and a waste of time 2 hours of a mentally sick brother,a fraud son, a kid who could have been a great footbal player (but he can't because his dad won't let him), a friend who wants to help but the main carachter wont listen, and a selfish, unloving man who only cars about himself and his wants, who sees his family as an obligation and not love, no positives at all DONT WATCH — Legomaker101

WOW
★★★★★
The actor's performances were beyond anything I have seen in a long time. The film was more than just moving; it was the depiction of the life of a family-flawed and heroic- that was deeply affecting because it touched what is profoundly real about all our struggles to survive and try to get it right. Highly reccommended. Films this well done don't come along very often. — rowan2

The Play on Film
★★★★
Denzel and Viola Davis put on an acting clinic. The rest if the cast is decent but not on their level. It's very much like the play and less like a standard movie drama. — Dan Hart Design

I broke down at the end
★★★★★
I have my reasons.. Don't judge me! Well played in what it was meant to deliver! — iam_calvinwayne

not my kind of movie
★★★★★
I'm guessing the rotten tomatoes people like this type of movie. It's not my cup of tea. I guess the acting is fantastic...but the story behind the movie wasn't my kind of movie. He definitely did a great job of acting...but I found myself skipping through the movie just to get through the movie. It just seemed like a real-life kind of movie...angry father who's chance in life missed him...son who hates his dad...it just wasn't a feel good movie. — Fly Fishing for Bonefish !

Conversational
★★★★★
No action or thriller here. A conversational movie where real actors play real people. The amount of lines these actors and actresses had to memorize....amazing! Emotional and beautiful. — Daisylillymom

Fences kept Troy from being more....
★★★★★
thats what this movie is all about. The fence was in his mind. He couldn't let go of the past--- or stop himself from blaming others for his failures. He was a hard worker but not a good person. He felt his place in life was in stone and he couldn't be any more than he was. He had no faith anyone else in his circle could be more. He never changed and let his past define him. He was never free until he died. The acting was phenomonal. The story insightful. I tought it was fabulous and had a good lesson. Denzel and Viola were exceptional. — ATLLAW

A little on the fence but still score Denzel Washington with another stellar performance
★★★★★
Kinda hard to believe Denzel Washington didn't win another Oscar award but if I can recall someone did! Viola Davis!!! Are the Academy Awards still racist? This movie is not for those who get easily depressed. Good Fences make great movies! — 16 HORSES

Must See!
★★★★★
Wonderfully written and perfectly performed by Denzel and Viola. — dfelici1

Outstanding film, amazing performances!!
★★★★★
This movie was soo good. Wanted to go out, buy another ticket, and watch it all over again!! — Bloorain

Great Movie
★★★★★
I read the play back when I was in high school and loved it, so when I saw Denzel and Viola creating this to be seen on film I said to my self I had to see it. And I love the movie, the emotion, the struggle of life was all to real. I don't get the bad reviews by some people who can't get the reason why the N word was used a lot , well maybe those people are not too smart to recognize the time of when this movie takes place but that doesn't change my mind that this was a great movie to watch. If you don't like it then fine everypne has their opinion but it certainly wasn't a bad movie. — Romello Styles

Good, not great, but good
★★★★
I enjoyed the story. Man struggles to be bigger and better than life allows. At 20 I would have walked out, at 30 to 40, maybe gave it an okay. Now, I know where the guy is coming from. A coming of age film for those of us coming into .... well, later ages. — LOMG77

Hype
★★★★★
The hype was better than the movie. Would like to have $5 of my money back. — GAR''BAGE

Tremendous
★★★★★
Denzel does it again ! Fantastic movie , Viola Davis is beyond phenomenal. Great movie , life , love , and family! I can't say enough good things about it! Acting doesn't get any better than this . — Memoe25

Waste of Money and Time
★★★★
Worse movie I have ever seen! Disappointing Denzel Washington character of All time! I hated this movie, and I cannot stress enough how it took every ounce of my being to even sit through until the end. If You are still doubting me; do Yourself a huge favor and wait for it to be available for rental so You don't waste as much Money as I did. — BamaGirlGing

It all Happens in the Backyard
★★★★
Cheaply made. Details failing: Bottle varies from hand to hand as to liquid volume; plants disappear from outside shelf. Where was the eye for detail? Acting was great. But the detail distractions ruin any thought it might be an award winner. Don't buy. — Jchalups

Fences
★★★★★
Amazing — NiñoTKD

hmmmmmm
★★★★
nice littlr play that transitioned well to the screen....personally i grew up at this time and in a similar neighborhood. Wonderfully acted; but not oscar material for Best Picture......just a neighborhood opinion! And yes! Auntie Helen's house was that neat and that clean! — artistcaper

Wow what a story!!!
★★★★★
Wow Denzel and Viola were fantastic! So many struggles, emotions, twists, etc., this movie brings them all together nicely, and wraps it all into a powerful story. These are the types of movies I want to watch, please keep making them! — Realblog

Excellent
★★★★★
Great movie worth the buy — Mindcraft33

Surprisingly great, exceeded expectations
★★★★★
This movie, although sad but it portrays life in many family's but shows there achievements as well. Excellent acting skills shown by all artists. This film will be listed in the National archives without a doubt. — Lear23

You learn something from this movie
★★★★★
The last review gave this movie a 1 because the person wanted it to be 'positive'. I wholeheartedly disagree with that perspective. This movie was a great story about life. Life is not perfect. People are not perfect. You make choices and you must accept the consequences and move forward. Forgiveness and compassion are important lessons to learn & they are often difficult. This movie had incredible acting (you can't get any better than Denzel & Viola is amazing). It's a real, honest, raw story and a beautiful one at that. — mac.10515