Tackling racism in America via documentary is certainly not a new thing, however directing Raoul Peck manages to put forth one of the most fascinating examples in recent memory.
Working from the unfished book, Remember This House, by essayist, novelist and playwright James Baldwin, the director explores racism through Baldwin’s own experiences as well as his relationships with a trio of civil rights leaders: Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr. and Medgar Evers. Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, the film goes deep into the divisions that are still wildly visible today. Despite being based on the individual experiences of Baldwin and his friends, the instances and anecdotes are vivid enough that it is difficult for anyone not to understand that racial tolerance is still far from a resolved issue.
The scenes during the opening credits of the Black Lives Matter marches and recent police abuses serve as just another stark reminder of how far we still have to go as a country. Deeply powerful, I Am Not Your Negro should be mandatory viewing for anyone who believes we are living in a post racial society.
I Am Not Your Negro/ 94 mins. / Magnolia Home Entertainment/2017 / http://www.magnoliapictures.com/