Destin Daniel Cretton directed a generic biopic, based on the unfair treatment and systemic racism towards the black community, by the corrupt Alabama police force. Yes, these stories are powerful, when executed by talented actors, such as Jamie Foxx and Michael B. Jordan. Of course, it holds important values, which should be enforced in today’s society but these stories are getting repetitive and it’s frustrating to watch. Stories such as this one, involving wrongful conviction and mass incarceration are unfortunately still a harsh reality in America.
Does this film evoke an emotional response? Yes.
Are the actors delivering an important story in order to show this corruption in America? Yes.
However, within the past couple of years we’ve seen this narrative multiple times. We need more stories that have black actors in different roles. For every biopic that involves segregation or police brutality, there are only one or two films that break the character mould.
To make matters worse America is still in this state, the corruption is still there and it hasn’t gotten better, it just looks different. So showing the past and spreading hope that it should have changed, is ineffective because unless the system changes, these films are sadly a reality for so many people and shouldn’t be produced globally for mass consumption as Oscar bait any longer.
The film is purely used as Oscar bait. Yes, it has very important content but the actors are the reason this film was watchable. The pacing was extremely slow and the only scenes that really grabbed me were the scenes between Jamie Foxx and Michael B. Jordan. They were both incredibly strong together and they drove the narrative forward but it just wasn’t enough for me.