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Sylvie’s Love review – Tessa Thompson captivates in jazz-hot romance

Sparks fly between Thompson and Nnamdi Asomugha in this glossy period melodrama set in 1950s Harlem

Sylvie (Tessa Thompson) has been taught by her mother to stand tall, shoulders back and chin lifted, like a proper lady. Unobserved, she’s considerably looser, freer, grooving to Bill Haley’s See You Later, Alligator in the back of her father’s record store. It’s this uninhibited joy that catches the eye of struggling jazz saxophonist Robert (NFL player turned actor Nnamdi Asomugha) in Eugene Ashe’s glossy period romance.

Set in Harlem between 1957 and 1962, the lusty spark between the pair combusts despite Sylvie’s engagement to the more respectable Lacy (Alano Miller). An unexpected pregnancy and a career-making gig in Paris are further obstacles. Thompson and Asomugha have great chemistry, but the film stalls a little in the second half, when the focus pivots towards the couple’s careers.

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