Tag Archives: racism

13TH (2016) – My rating: 9.5/10

13thMy reaction to this Netflix Original documentary is simply WOW!  For a Black person, it’s truly depressing but it’s history and it is what it is. This is the kind of information everyone should know. Maybe it can make some kind of a difference regarding the race issues in America. No matter what character or category of person you might fall into, criminal, bad  or compassionate, I don’t see how anyone could go along with the stinking thinking outlined in this film.  13th is titled after the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which outlawed slavery (unless as punishment for a crime). DuVernay’s,  documentary opens with the idea that 25 percent of the people in the world, who are incarcerated, are incarcerated in the United States and argues that slavery is being effectively perpetuated in the US through mass incarceration. 13th features several prominent activists, politicians, and public figures such as, Angela Davis, Bryan Stevenson, Van Jones, Newt Gingrich, Cory Booker, Henry Louis Gates Jr. and many others.  It’s been said that one of the most compelling defenses behind this documentary is that it’s not opinionated or accusatory, it only presents the facts that are non disputable.  Racism, Slavery, the 13th Amendment, Jim Crow, ALEC, Republicans, The South, Political Leaders and Organizations, Militants,  Murder and The Privatization of the Prison System are all featured.  13th has garnered acclaim from film critics everywhere, as a major historian contribution that should not be ignored.

13th is directed by Ava DuVernay who also wrote and produced it along with Spencer Averick.  Living with and and knowing a lot of the facts in 13th didn’t make it any less disturbing to see put together in 13th.  I feel the issue of racism will never be resolved.  It’s bigger than anything we face and it’s truly a problem that’s eventually going to be our demise.  See it for yourself and form your own opinion.  13th is currently streaming on Netflix.

[13th is nominated for Best Documentary Feature]

 

RACE (2016) – My rating: 9/10

RaceWell done Stephen Hopkins, Stephan James and Jason Sudeikis.  A horrible situation exquisitely acted and well told.  Race issues certainly fits right in to today’s on going battles of racism, hatred and bigotry.  Makes me think we’ve learned nothing in the last 80 years.  It was quite interesting watching the bigotry of the Nazi regime vs the bigotry of the USA.  In the end, money and power prevailed.  The same as today.  There are many, many lessons to be learned from a movie like Race but I fear we’ll learn what we always learn and so the beat goes on the same as it always has.  There in the 1930’s we have a man, deemed as the fastest human alive, who could escalate the US to new heights in the Olympic games and we have people on both sides hating the fact that “the man” is Black.  It doesn’t matter the accolades we (the US) are about to achieve, only that “the man” is Black.  Against all odds, we put him in the race but the country holding the games is worse than we are.  They hate Blacks but even more than Blacks, they hate Jews.  Having to sit through this racism made me sick and angry.  It made me want to jump into the screen and strangle those responsible for stirring up this bigotry.  The whole thing is just so senseless and stupid.  People fighting because they were born Black or Jewish.  How dumb is that and what a waste of time.  What is one suppose to do about who they are, as if there’s something wrong with who they are?  Jesse Owens should have been able to concentrate on nothing else but winning but instead had to deal with both this own country and the country where the races were being held discriminating against him.  After all was said and done, he couldn’t even get a job to support his family.  Here is a man who represented his country in the 1936 Olympics and won 4 gold metals but couldn’t get a job because of his skin color.  Then you’re criticized for being a lazy non-working bum.  This is a bitter pill to swallow.  Race really brought out how screwed up the society is and how willing we are to sweep it all under the rug.  A dinner was held in Jesse’s honor but he couldn’t go in through the front of the hotel where the dinner was being held.  He had to use the service entrance.  It’s very hard to sit through movies that cause us to relive this part of history, especially when it’s still happening.  I commend Jesse Owens for his abilities, achievements and for holding it together when most would have lost it.  Watching Jesse Owen’s struggles from the onset of  his career as an Olympian to his bitter sweet victory when a doorman wouldn’t allow him to come in the front entrance of a hotel where he was being honored was a reminder that there’s much work to be done.  Freedom begins in your heart.

Strongly acted movie with loads of historic information surrounding the 1936 Olympics and Berlin where the games were held.  The relationship between Jesse and his coach was extraordinary and the issues between the team and Jesse Owens was also very interesting.  “Race” is a movie worth seeing.  Performances by Jeremy Irons as Avery Brundage whose actions cost the only Jewish candidates their participation in the games and Barnaby Metschurat as the German Chancellor, Joseph Goebbels who said “do you expect Hitler to be photographed shaking hands with that” (that meaning Jesse Owens) were outstanding.

 

FRUITVALE STATION (2013) – My rating: 10/10

*** SOME SPOILERS ***

FruitvaleStationFruitvale Station is flying way under radar.  Chances are, you’ve never even heard of this movie!  It’s based on a true story that won’t make you feel good.  LA police have a reputation for stereotyping,  excessive violence and racism.  This is the story of a 22 year old, black father who is down on his luck but is trying to fight wrong doing with all his mite.  He has lots of support from his family, who he also gives lots of support.  His mother portrayed by Octavia Spencer, (Oscar winner for her role in The Help) could possibly get another nod for Fruitvale.  After seeing 2 Guns, this movie definitely pulled the plug on my happy endorphins.  The events of this film went down something like the Trayvon Martin story.  By the end, I was in tears, as was the entire audience.  There were about 10 of us in the theater — as I mentioned, this movie is flying way under the radar.  I am happy to see the truth brought to light.  It isn’t very pretty but it’s real.

See Fruitvale Station, if not for entertainment, see it for the educational value.  See it because, as they say, “the truth will set you free”.  I’m not feeling very free right now and I don’t think justice was served but I also know nothing we can do will bring back the dead! I would like to see an end to this sort of thing.  Judge for yourself.  Fruitvale Station is an excellent movie, well acted and we get the message!