Writer-director Justin Simien’s debut film, Dear White People, focuses on the lives of black students at an Ivy League college where racial tensions skyrocket when a black-face party is thrown by white students.
I liked that the film was more satire than serious. There is plenty of clever humor to soften the message and the quick wit forces you to pay attention in order to catch the jokes.
I was reminded of Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing, but for a new generation. One who’s racial issues are more subtle. I appreciated the inclusion of mixed race issues, and the inclusion of the gay black student, who is left the outsider of both groups.
I like that the movie wasn’t too preachy. It isn’t clear what the moral is or who is being made fun of. It is clear this was made for both black people and white people. There were some parts that made me uncomfortable or angry. I identified with a lot of the situations and thoughts of the characters, and I was reminded that right now, in this country, we’re facing some real life racial questions.
For it being Simien’s first, I think it was great. I recommend that everyone see it but it isn’t making my list of favorites. It was a bit dull in the beginning and I just don’t feel it was unique enough to warrant seeing it more than once. I am interested in seeing more from Simien in the future though.
In response to Daily Post’s Blogging U. course, Writing 101 assignment: Play with word count