I got accepted into a writing fellowship with New York Film Festival. Besides the obvious benefit of getting to watch as many damn movies I wanted, sit in on Q&A's with some directors and movie stars (Kristen Stewart is pretty blunt! That's her #brand.) I also got to write an comparative analysis of Moonlight and 13TH. Both films deal with the ruinious effects of denigrating depictions of blackness in engaging ways. From the article:
The power of black imaging is essential to understanding “13TH.” While plenty of exposition on the discriminatory and overly punitive legislation exists, the time spent on “Birth” tells its audience that those laws emanate from a much older notion of black criminality. The major political players in what we now know as “mass incarceration” wouldn’t be in office without a majority of American voters believing their platform and vision. Enough people had to locate black proximity as a latent danger to their safety to believe in the need for “law and order.” As Malkia Cyril, founder and Executive Director of the Center for Media Justice, notes in her interview, one of many that comprise the narration in “13TH,” even black people bought into the narrative they were told about themselves. Blacks and whites had the same nightly news parading images of black criminals, the same movies in their cineplexes, and in many cases, drew the same conclusions. This is not an accident.
Again, you can read the rest at IndieWire. Let me know what you think!