In the history of cinema, movies set during the time of high school has spanned from when James Dean was a Rebel Without A Cause, The Breakfast Club was showing us how our differences can bring us together, and Clueless was a comedy on just how ridiculous cliques can be. Selah and the Spades continues that cinematic tradition, with an impressive modern day drama. Tayarisha Poe’s film arrived on Amazon Prime last weekend and it’s a fresh look at high school factions. There is a bit of a Shakespearean vibe, the setting is the boarding school of Haldwell, where students care less about their studies than they do their popularity, but it’s still stressful, students rolled up into a ball of anxiety. The leader of the group known as the spades is Selah (Lovie Simone), a cheerleader, beautiful, and determined to not let other factions steal her crown. Maxxie (Jharrel Jerome) is her right hand man, the muscle of the group, and always confident. With senior year on the horizon, Selah knows someone will need to take over running the spades, but who that is, she does not know. When transfer Paloma (Celeste O’Connor) arrives, her and Selah spark a new bond. But can things be trusted in a world of parties and gossip? Selah and the Spades is a dramatic and often charming film, ushering a new collection of rising stars, but highlighting the fantastic debut writing/directing skills of Tayarisha Poe. And yes, high school is still a rough time.