Saturday, November 1, 2014

Dear Black, People, Please See and Support "Dear White People" Movie


"The unexpected election of activist Samantha White (Tessa Thompson) as head of a traditionally black residence hall sets up a college campus culture war that challenges conventional notions of what it means to be black. While Sam leverages her notoriety as host of the provocative and polarizing radio show 'Dear White People' to try to prevent the college from diversifying Armstrong Parker House, outgoing head-of-house Troy Fairbanks (Brandon P. Bell), son of the university's dean (Dennis Haysbert), defies his father's lofty expectations by applying to join the staff of Pastiche, the college's influential humor magazine. Lionel Higgins (Tyler James Williams), an Afro-sporting sci-fi geek, is recruited by the otherwise all-white student newspaper to go undercover and write about black culture--a subject he knows little about--while the aggressively assimilated Coco Conners (Teyonah Parris) tries to use the controversy on campus to carve out a career in reality TV. But no one at Winchester University is prepared for Pastiche's outrageous, ill-conceived annual Halloween party, with its 'unleash your inner Negro' theme throwing oil on an already smoldering fire of resentment and misunderstanding. When the party descends into riotous mayhem, everyone must choose a side."

It's been a long time since we had a movie to talk about in the same vein as Spike Lee's early works.  But the indiegogo film, "Dear White People," from Justin Simien has brought it back full circle to Lee's "Do the Right Thing," and "She's Gotta Have It."

I'm not sure if Simien realizes just how much of what's new is old.  

I was reminded after seeing the movie last weekend, that the more things change the more they stay the same.  I invited my daughter to see it with me and she did.  And then I told her to be sure to get on social media (instagram, twitter, Facebook) and tell all her friends, who hadn't seen it, to make sure they do.  Movies like this don't come around often.

And while there is definitely a comedic side to the film, it tackles head-on a very serious subject - racism in the echelons of higher education  - in particular - Ivy League (and other) predominately White colleges.

I hope that it not only encourages dialogue (and keeps it going), but also opens up the eyes of young people to the importance of activism and involvement in our communities.

Don't miss it.

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