“I just wanted a normal family,” Peter (Tim Roth) tells his wife Amy (Naomi Watts) towards the end of Luce. “Our lives didn’t have to be a political fucking statement.” Unfortunately for Peter, Luce is the kind of movie where everyone’s life is a political statement. Julius Onah’s film tackles questions of prejudice, privilege, code-switching, sex and race in 21st-century America, and the characters spend much of the running time declaiming the script’s themes at each other in lieu of having genuine conversations. Luce was adapted from the 2013 play by J.C. Lee, who co-wrote the screenplay with Onah, and the pair can’t disguise its stage origins, though there are enough intriguing hooks here to pull viewers in.
Read the rest of my view at the BFI