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Renee Elise Goldsberry says her emotional drama ‘Waves’ goes beyond race


Courtesy of A24Renée Elise Goldsberry is captivating audiences with her new emotional drama Waves.

In the film, which follows an affluent suburban family of four, Goldsberry plays Catherine, the stepmother of a high school athlete, who suffers an injury that leads him into a downward spiral. Goldsberry tells ABC Audio that the film offers more than just a narrative on race.

“I think what I love about this movie is that we’ve moved beyond that,” Goldsberry says. “We’ve moved beyond, are we responsible? Are we good people? Are we doing things that people, good people would do?”

“Now, in this movie, we make mistakes,” she continues. “We make terrible mistakes. And what I love is that they are our fault. You know, it’s not just this racist world that we live in hurting us, no. We are responsible for choices that we make that are bad. That are questionable, that we need to learn and grow from…as people.”

Goldsberry notes that in the film her character also struggles with feeling inadequate and disconnected to her step-children and husband, played by Sterling K. Brown. Goldsberry says that the real emotions she expresses in the film are just a sample of how the film accurately paints characters in a flawed, but authentic light.

“And I love the fact that this movie is cast with people doing things that… a lot of people would not have chosen to do,” she says. “And, we are not painted in the most positive light at all time: we are human. We are three dimensional characters that make mistakes and learn and grow from them.”

“And that’s the way we need to be represented,” she adds. 

Waves, also starring Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Taylor Russell, is in select theaters.

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