In Luce, the debut film by Julius Onah, the conflicts of a suburban American high school come to represent the fractures within the whole country, and complex ethical and moral issues are navigated with the stakes of a thriller. Based on a play by J.C. Lee, it stars Kelvin Harrison Jr. as Luce Edgar, the adopted son of Amy (Naomi Watts) and Peter (Tim Roth). Ten years after emigrating as a child from Eritrea, Luce is a model student athlete, exalted and subtly pressured by the likes of his African American teacher Harriet (Octavia Spencer). But when Harriet receives a term paper from Luce that she finds out of character, intimating a potential for violence, she reaches out to Amy and Peter, setting into motion a machine of doubt, suspicion, and resentment, exposing what’s been beneath the surface for characters that have been working hard at playing roles that have been ascribed to them. - Eric Hynes, Sundance Institute.