2020 has been quite a year. Plenty of attention has been paid, rightly so, to the Black Lives Matter movement. Though this is in no way a new issue. It has been going on for decades…actually centuries. That kind of abuse, mistreatment, racism, and inequity over the course of years and years leaves a mark. A deep but oftentimes invisible mark to observers. Eventually the pain lode they have been bearing in silence is going to manifest itself in some way. Different ways.
This brilliantly executed and moving short film from the Tyler Street Films (Film mogul Tyler Perry’s studio) is directed by Lawrence “Law” Watford, a native of Brooklyn. It is a film which you are not just supposed to watch but is aiming to encourage you to act. Act out against the way race relations have occurred up to this point and stand up for equality. Fight for it.
Shot in Brooklyn, it is a taught 15 minutes long. After an African American young boy is shot by an NYPD officer what usually happens happens. Meaning nothing. It is announced that no charges are going to be laid against the officer.
His mother is wrecked with grief. She approaches the ambitious District Attorney, who is most certainly not going to go against the Police Brotherhood as they play an important role in getting him elected, and pleads to bring charges against the man who killed her young son. He refuses. Her grief will not let her stop there. She will then turn to another method to seek justice.
Part of the reason why the killing of George Floyd affected so many was that it pushed us (white people) out of our comfort zone. We saw something so horrendous and wrong that many felt they had to do something. Sitting back and doing nothing was not an option anymore. This is a film which continues on in that mindset. Realizes that most of the time we have to be shocked into doing what is right. What has always been right.
Film makes us look beyond the protests and rallies. Makes us wonder what is going to occur next? What if these protests don’t result in a change? What’s next? How can Black and Brown people bring about a change? A question which none of the potential answers are good. This is America. And a large part of the rest of the world, as well.