The Film I Am Not Your Negro is a 2016 Documentary that depicts the key events of the 20th Century African American History. This documentary was inspired by James Baldwin’s thirty-page unfinished manuscript. The manuscript was going to be his next project in which he called Remember This House. The manuscript was to be a personal explanation of the lives and successive assassinations of three of his close friends, Medgar Evers, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. Unfortunately, in 1987 James Baldwin passed away leaving the unfinished manuscript to be forgotten, well that is what some thought. Now master filmmaker Raoul Peck envisions the manuscript James Baldwin never finished. The outcome is a fundamental examination of race in America, using Baldwin's original thoughts and materials to make the project possible. I Am Not Your Negro is a journey into black history that connects the past of the Civil Rights movement to the present of Black Lives Matter. It is a film that questions black representation in Hollywood and beyond. And, ultimately, by confronting the deeper connections between the lives and assassination of these three leaders, Baldwin and Peck have produced a work that challenges the very definition of what America stands for. Though this is the main thought of the documentary there are many key features that make this film much so about whiteness in American History and now.
The black race has faced many hardships throughout American history. The harsh treatment is apparent through the brutal slavery era, the Civil Rights movement, or even now where sparks of racial separation emerge in urbanized areas of Baltimore, Chicago, and Detroit. Black Americans must do something to defend their right as an equal American. “I Am Not Your Negro” argues that the black race will not thrive unless society stands up against the conventional racism that still appears in modern America. “The Other Wes Moore” argues an inspiring message that proves success is a product of one’s choices instead of one’s environment or expectations.
The movie’s main focus is racism in the southern United States. It was at times hard to hear the KKK members in the movie describe African Americans in such vile words. The movie accurately portrays racism in the south; a good portion of whites really believed that blacks were the scum of the earth. Blacks were separated from the population, and routinely harassed, beaten, and sometimes killed because of their race.
The final film by Marlon Riggs, Black is…Black Ain't, is concerned with the state of the African American community. This film essentially asks the question, what does it mean to be black? The director and producer, Marlon Riggs, guides viewers along an “an up-front examination of racism, sexism, and homophobia within the black community itself. Bringing together personal stories, interviews, music, history, and performance, Black Is...Black Ain’t asks African Americans: What is black, black enough, or too black?”1
Tim Wise’s film “White Like Me” is an educational documentary about racism and white privilege. The film begins with Wise’s personal story on how he learned the importance of race at a young age after attending preschool at Tennessee State University, a historically African American college. Being one of the only Caucasian students and being taught by predominantly African American administrators, allowed Wise to gain respect for African American authority figures which ultimately made a huge difference in how he came to see the world. Throughout the film, Wise expands on his personal encounters with race while incorporating interviews with scholars and candid comments from white students discussing their opinions on some heavy questions
The documentary, The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross, allows one to experience African American history through key historical sites, and interviews with living eyewitnesses such as those who fought during the well-known civil-rights movement. The documentary sheds light on the experience of African Americans, both in the past and today. The information presented in class further aids in detailing how African American history shaped the African American community in regards to support systems, crises, but most importantly, how these individuals used resiliency to overcome their trials and tribulations towards a fights for rights, freedom, and respect. During the six episodes, one will see that the road and battle to freedom for blacks in America was not linear, but rather complex and difficult- it was much like the course of a river, full of loops and turns, sometimes slow, and sometimes reversing the current of advancement. Although enslavement led to the creation of the African American people, it manifested into the multiplicity of cultural institution, beliefs, and religion and social institutions that the African American people have established- along with their strength and resiliency. From slavery, lynching’s, and the many marches and protests led by phenomenal black leaders, to the gained freedoms and the first black president in the White House, the documentary, The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross, details an engaging journey through African-American history from a perspective that thoroughly reflects the lives of African-Americans and the community in its
Selma is based on a true story that happened in 1965 in Selma, Alabama. Selma was the city that ended suffrage for African Americans because of Rev Martin Luther king and the help from his Christian family. The movie has some intense violence and a lot of foul language, but overall is mainly about Christian and moral content. Even though the Civil Rights Act of 1964 desegregated in certain areas. It made it more difficult for black to register to vote. In 1964 Rev Martin Luther king receives a Noble Pace Prize. The Civil Rights Act was outlaw segregation in all 50 states, but African Americans where still having trouble at that time. Martin decides voting should be there next fight. So, they march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama.
Imagine the world is invaded by aliens. Some of them eat humans, some live among humans, and others live outside of our world. You don’t know it, but many of the people who have shaped our lives and our culture aren’t even human themselves. This is the world of the 1997 film Men in Black, directed by Barry Sonnenfeld. Men in Black is a sci-fi comedy about a group of enforcement agents defending and regulating aliens from invading Earth. But if you take their costume off, Men In Black can be seen as far more than a comedy about space aliens. Under the lens of postcolonial criticism, the film reveals itself to be a veiled, political commentary on immigration. A lens is a way for us to look at a piece of literature in a whole new depiction that we may not have thought of the first time we had read or watched a piece of literature. Through the postcolonial lens, I can see the movie as a biased contrast between the immigrants and the immigration police. Interpreting the movie through this lens allows me to see that the Men in Black are the immigration police, and are considered to be the protagonists of the film. On the other hand, the aliens, or immigrants when looking through the lens, are the antagonists of the movie; The Men in Black protect the US from bad aliens, giving immigration police the positive reinforcement of the brutal evictions immigrants received in the 90s.
Dear White People is a show about black students’ attempt to address and solve racial issues at their predominately white, ivy league institution. Each episode is told from the perspective of the main characters. The point of the film is to communicate a narrative that is not seen enough. The writers rely on stereotypes to certain extents for the purposes of dramatization, but they clearly show how no matter the shade and/or background of the black characters, they are all still directly affected by racism and prejudice around them.
“Mississippi Burning” is based on the investigation of a missing persons case which turned into a murder case in Mississippi that involved three young students who were civil rights workers involved in Freedom Summer of 1964. Two of the students were Jewish and one was an African-American whom came down to Mississippi from New York City. After the students did not return home the parents pushed for media attention since the Mississippi Police were not doing any investigations. The FBI then had to get involved with the case. Little did the parents know that the police were the ones who actually committed the murder of their children. This film shows us the oppression towards African-Americans, specifically in the south.
As the movie began, I noticed the story was not just about King. Many other iconic leaders of the SNCC and the SCLC that helped bring forth an awareness of black inequality and triumph to end voter discrimination aided King. The film showed the struggle of African Americans as they fought for their right to vote. In multiple scenes, King sat with President Johnson to speak of the Black vote and how it is a step to changes in America, giving
Throughout the seventeen minutes of the speech, both blacks and whites of all generations were influenced by one man’s words. This purpose of the speech is one of the most vital in analyzing it as a whole because the informative and influential aspects are what directly spoke to the audience.
This movie is a wonderful production starting from 1960 and ending in 1969 covering all the different things that occurred during this unbelievable decade. The movie takes place in many different areas starring two main families; a very suburban, white family who were excepting of blacks, and a very positive black family trying to push black rights in Mississippi. The movie
In the short film, “The Negro Soldier,” the whole focus was to get African Americans to join the military. With the use of propaganda, the U.S. government hoped to promote getting African Americans to want to fight for their country. It hoped to instill patriotism in them. It showed that Germany and the Nazis had no respect for them and considered them the scum of the earth. It also portrayed them being accepted as equals into the American society. It was used to make them think they were wanted and play a major role in the success of the war against germany. And to ultimately make Germany and the Nazis look like the bad guys (destroying their monuments) instead of the racist America they lived in. It also portrayed African American soldiers prior contributions in previously fought wars as pivotal moments in American history. It made it seem like they were the reason for those victories. It also explained how the African American soldiers were honored with tributes, memorials, medals and parades for their service in the military. In the ongoing WWII, it was said that there were three times the number of African Americans soldiers in WWII than in WWI. Also, many more were getting commissioned and attending West Point and OCS (Officer Candidate School). African American men that were once printers, tailors, entertainers are now soldiers in the Army as gunners, tankers, radio operators, mechanics, quartermasters, and infantrymen. They were now the backbone of
Over 400 hundred years there has been slavery, racism, and discrimination in America with blacks, and other minorities. A famous man once said “I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality... I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word” – Martin Luther King Jr (brain quote). The movies ‘Miracle at St. Anna’ directed by Spike Lee, and ’12 Years a Slave’ directed by Steve McQueen both show the struggle African Americans went through during a tough racial period in American history. Even today in Modern society African Americans still deal with racism. Spike