Cinema #15: Dope.

February 15, 2016

Hey Gang!

 How are you guys today? I hope you are well. Today's post is going to a little bit different from what you are used to, especially when it comes to my movie reviews. Its okay, there's nothing wrong with trying something new right? Take Dope for instance, Written by Rick Famuyiwa and Produced by Forest Whitaker, its a movie portrayed as a coming of age story of a black "geek" that wants to go to Harvard. But on the real, Dope is so much more than that. If you haven't had the chance to watch, it's on Netflix, I'll wait.


1. It explores the Black Diaspora. Many people have this idea that all Black People, all people of color are all the same. That we can be generalized. We can't we are not a monolith. We are all different and we all deserve a chance to have our voices heard. I love that we see life from Dom's point of view: the drug dealer, the man on the street view. You see that the love interest isn't just there to be a goal for the protagonist. She has her own ideas, her own dreams, and Malcolm helps her reach hers goals, not the other way around which is so often found in other films.

2. It uses stereotypes against themselves. It explores the lack of opportunity, the urban setting and the surroundings of drugs, gangs and violence. Dope shows you that there is more than meets the eye. Just because you are surrounded by bad things doesn't make you a bad person. For instance, he uses his surroundings to his benefit, he never let them make him a victim. Even when all the people around him want him to be: his guidance counselor, Dom, Jacoby. They all just want him to be a black kid from the hood that knows his place. What I like about this movie; is that he tries damn hard and succeeds in defining his place for himself.

3. I also like that it takes a stab at the place of Homosexuality and gay rights has in the black community. The fact that Dig is a lesbian and loves her grandmother dearly, even though every Sunday she takes her to church to pray the gay away. As a member of the LBGTQA it really irks me when the black community doesn't stand up for their own. We're only as strong as our weakest link. We should stand together.

 It brings to light the unfair issues the black community has with just the idea of being black. From Beyonce to the Black Panthers to Martin Luther King Jr. Every person on the planet has this idea of black people and what it means to be one. That is OK. You are a human being and you can think whatever you want to think and do whatever you want to do that is the freedom of being human. The time it becomes an issue is when you project those thoughts and emotions upon someone who does not deserve them and someone who has not asked for them.
 It is hard to be a black american. It is hard to take a deep breath when you see a police officer driving behind you. It is hard when you enter a store and see the clerk has clenched her fists, or that their eyes follow you around the entire establishment. It is hard when other black people say you are weird for liking what you do. That you aren't one of us, because you have a different philosophy. Even worse, when non-black people feel like that they can harp on what we say or do, or how we celebrate each other because they are afraid it leaves them out.
 I'm sorry if celebrating Black Excellence makes you feel left out. I am sorry if the loss of our lives, and our subsequent protests makes you late for work, or that it blocks your way home. I'm sorry that the mere thought of our celebrations of the lives we lead, of our inspirational leaders and role models gives you pause to clap. I'm sorry that you are so self absorbed you can't see that for the first time in a long time we are able to celebrate ourselves, after decades of being told everything about us is a waste. Everything about us, is lesser than anyone else. I'm sorry that more than 20 decades weren't enough time for everything to be about you.

 Have you seen Dope? What did you think? Tell me down below. Lets talk about it on Twitter.

Stay Nerdy!
Until Next Time,

~ Spokhette!~


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