Guest-written by CAE candidate Noelia Lezameta

Oftentimes, we go to the cinema for mere escapism, to be transported to a galaxy far, far away and immerse ourselves in the lives of others, but today it is about Kathryn Bigelow’s award-winning crime drama Detroit.


John Boyega as officer Dismukes

Not only isn’t this film really about pain, it also overcomes the social temptation to make it about the emotional duress experienced by African-Americans during the riots of the late 1960s. It is only barely about the Algiers Motel Incident, in which three innocent black men were murdered and several others were assaulted and humiliated by three white police officers.

The duality of appearance is a significant theme of Detroit, with heroes in street clothes and villains often wearing a badge or military rank. But the reversal of our expectations isn’t as simple as the metaphorical if not literal expression of black and white. The cast is cohesive and honest; their performances are creating with authenticity and driven by a cause bigger than personal rewards.

Given the setting of the film, the music is incredible too –– and yet even the alluring sounds of our favourite Motown hits are sounded with a profoundity and bitterness, as it provides a sad contrast to what we’re seeing played out in front of us.


Riots break out to the fear of Detroit’s African Americans

Detroit is an important and thoughtful history reminder if not an outright lesson from fifty years ago. And in these times of Black Lives Matter and countless videos of police abusing and killing black men, it feels sadly prescient.

Genre: Crime drama.

Director: Kathryn Bigelow.

Original release: August 4, 2017.

Country: United States.

Awards: 4 NACP Image Award nominations.

Grade: A

All images are taken from Google.


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