@Sue Johnson I believe we are of the same mind set on the impact such narratives have on women and minorities. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this topic.
@Tameka You raise some very valid points that they can help to educate folks but when the narratives that explore a particular culture are so narrow that education can sometimes be flawed. And there are some great independent projects done but they do not have the marketing budgets to get mainstream distribution so there impact is minimal. Thank you for your thoughts on this topic!
@Tiffene Love Screenwriter I agree that yes the same resources and money could have been used to produced something new and exciting but I also know the powers that be have an agenda to keep the same narratives going. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this topic.
@Tre McGriff I see your point and I grew up and experienced the first Roots and saw the incredible and immediate impact it had on folks black and white. I still want more balance and also understand that the decision to bank roll such narratives comes with an agenda that is psychological in its intent. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.
@Daisean Mills I think you might have more current and affirming stories that you would want to explore....smile Thank you for reading and sharing your perspective as a filmmaker.
I agree that there should be more historical artworks for people of color that dont show us in inferior roles. I feel that, it's something we are too used to seeing. We are never shown in a good light with fewer character flaws and unfortunately we are obsessed with being flawed due to the slavery mentality that has been engrained in our subconscious. I did start watching the show because I never watched the oringinal, Roots. It's apparent that the show is destined to showcase the breaking of Kunta Kinte's legacy for generations. The world at large, can most definitely use a less graphic narrative for people of color. To see women being taken for the pleasure of anyone who could care less about our virtue is a difficult thing to witness even in a fictional television platform. However, I think it has information athat our youngest generation needs to witness so that they understand that they are more than meets the eye. As a youngster, watching things like this made me angry but its also quickened my souk conscious to understand thay I have mkre depth than meets the eye. Its totally about how you percieve it.
Charles I will check out your work. @emienewright thanks for the list of movies. I'll seek those out as well. Loving my black history now that I didn't get growing up.
I am tired of the constant reboots of originals from years past. If it wasn't broke, then why fix it thought. Besides, you are so correct Mr. E, it maintains the mentality of an already bias film and television viewer to see the African-American as one under. It also attempts to keep women of any color even further down the line of equality. Have no desire to see the "new" ROOTS. I saw the original and cried. Same with 12YEARS A SLAVE.
First things first. The original version was better, however, the West African accents and casting of Africans are on target in this re-telling ( no shade, Will Smith: "Tell de troot.")
I get why the slave narrative is (seemingly) prevalent. It is a profitable, proven formula. Fortunately, the formula also benefits us in that it fills the void that lazy parents and schools create when they fail to thoroughly educate students in US History. They re-telling is necessary and timely in an era when, despite the messaging that BLack Lives Matter, many brothas are not their brothers keepers as evidenced by daily crime reports and films like Chiraq. History, including slave and civil rights narratives, reminds us to 'remember' our selves. That's a positive in my book and I much prefer such narratives to Empire, the shock value of productions like How to Get Away With Murder and Scandal, and the shallow predictability of Tyler Perry and barber/beauty shop comedies (for lack of a better term).
That said, there is room for new narratives and no one's stopping us from creating them. Documentaries are the next, great, accessible frontier for anyone with a camera and a story to tell. I will support well planned, quality productions about us and pray Spike Lee and Ava Duvernay keep them coming.
The roots remake when I heard about it disappointed me so much because I feel like it's just laziness on the production companies part and it just feels like such a waste of time to spend time, money, talent that could be in something new and powerful for 2016 for the black community but they took what I guess was considered the easy route and remade an already classic film that didn't need a remake at all.
Yes, the surge in slave narratives is somewhat troubling...It appears that Hollywood is more apt to bankroll our pain, instead of our UPLIFT...However, I think this Roots remake is essential for this young generation...I remember the spike in interest in not only our history but our genealogy and lineage when the first "Roots" came out...I also remember it being a topic of discussion with my family as we sat at the dinner table...We need to put the cell phones down at the dinner table and connect with our families again...I've been impressed by what I've seen thus far...
Shamefully after I said I would watch another slave narrative film I accidentally watched it, and I regretted it immediately. The quickly blamed the network for that trash, I blamed some A list and B list actors for not acting like they just came out of Africa, I blame the directors and cinematographer the most. I couldn't get jiggy with the camera angels and the story. It was just a trash film and I hated it they really should have asked me to direct it.
@Emiene Wright I am not against exploring those narratives but it becomes problematic when it becomes a limited filter in which we get to experience our cultures history and contributions. And yes I believe it is intentional to control how we see and others see us. I just want more balance. Thank you for reading and sharing your insight on this topic.
Charles, I respectfully disagree. The utter failure of US schools to teach this part of history that disproves all of the ideals America likes to proclaim its built on leaves a knowledge void in the general population. Pop culture is filling that void (however unevenly and inaccurately) so that people at least have an idea of what happened. I personally don't think the films go far enough, showing the true conditions and their impact. "12 Years a Slave?" How about the folks who had to endure "90 Years a Slave?" I'm encouraged by the slow-swelling trend of stories of resistance, like the upcoming Nat Turner movie, and Betty DeRamus' magnificent books "Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories from the Underground Railroad" and "Freedom by Any Means: Con Games, Voodoo Schemes, True Love and Lawsuits on the Underground Railroad." We need to learn the ways in which we fought and WON.
@evelyn It is the balance that is in question and the agenda to why we do not see more affirming stories supported in mainstream media. But if you are looking for alternative stories please check out my series on a Black nerd growing up in the 1970's ,,,,smile Thank you for reading and sharing your views.
@Gena Power That is my point exactly. It is not that we do not honor our history but it becomes problematic when only a small portion is of that history is only shared. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts.
Although I'm not a fan of remakes, I do see value in retelling our history. And we need to keep telling it, just as other cultures tell their history. Future generations need to know their history. I enjoyed the movie 12 years a slave. I read the book, which was better of course. But can you imagine how many people would not have known about that story if it wasn't for the movie? We do need to balance our history with positive stories and messages. So you've graduated from film school...create something new. I'm looking forward to the new narratives.
I agree with you Charles. There are so many other stories to be told. African American people who did great things, and their stories deserve to be told too! We know that our ancestors were slaves, and we also know the unspeakable evils they had to endure. Show us rising above all of that. Surviving even when every odd was against us!
@niurys it really is amazing how someone we do not know personally has such an incredible impact on our lives. Thank you for sharing your memories.
@drewkinney.14 wow you actually met his royal purple ness. What a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing.
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