This puts us in the position of the killer and allows us to firstly relate to him. To bad this was done as an advocacy film and not a documentary. If the viewer is still on board with reality and humanity, they should answer No. DuVernay said she learned the most during this section of the documentary. Something we never see throughout the entire film up until the very end is the murderer. I do not believe that Ava had permission to teach people how the 13th made slavery a function of the state.
More specifically, the documentary focuses on the history and statistics surrounding African American men being disproportionally represented in prisons. Decades later, studies have shown that private prisons are no more efficient and are often more abusive than those run by the federal or state governments. Her analysis could not be more timely nor more infuriating. I think that racial justice in this country will remain a distant dream as long as we think that it can be achieved simply through rational policy discussions. Produced and filmed in secrecy, 13th was revealed only after it was announced as the opening film for the , the first documentary ever to open the festival.
Black Lives Matter is not an unknown movement in modern America. The civil-rights law scholar and theologian brought many of these truths to the fore in her much-heralded book. I came away from this movie noting that the subject of prison slavery was effectively overlooked. I wish there had been some mention of organizing and strikes, especially given all the strong organizers who appear if briefly in the film. What I didn't expect was to find myself curled into a stiff seat in McKeldin, struggling to hold back tears as the ending credits rolled.
In this fierce call to action, director Ava DuVernay effectively doubles down on both educating her viewers and inspiring them to take a stand against racial injustice in 2016 America. Each year 24 million go through our justice system. Another refreshing trait in this documentary is that while the story clearly leans left, it didn't pass up the opportunity to criticize both sides of the aisle. It created the feeling that this wasn't a political or ideological issue — this was, and still is, a human issue. More than that, she posits that it is actually a continuation of slavery.
The documentary starts its narrative with the controversial history of the enslavement of African descended people. With a potent mixture of archival footage and testimony from a dazzling array of activists, politicians, historians, and formerly incarcerated women and men, DuVernay creates a work of grand historical synthesis. People need to be confronted with the simple question of whether or not the 13th totally abolished slavery. Many businesses continue to make huge profits from prisons, including , which provides telephone services at high rates and which provides food services that are substandard. But when you put it next to other colors, it creates a different picture. It is a political project that began in response to the rebellious social movements in U.
We also see people like African-American congressman Charlie Rangel, who originally was on board with the tough on crime laws President Clinton signed into law. Documents like these are important to remind us how we got here. Many of them are actively involved in efforts to reform a broken system. Again, thanks for doing this! Juleyka Lantigua-Williams: A lot of the film is about questioning definitions of things and questioning the way that things are labeled. And she unabashedly includes the chilling footage from a number of recent police shootings of unarmed African-American men and boys.
What policies or reforms should a person support if she or he watches 13 th and finds himself, as I did, paralyzed with awareness? The struggle that is left is stopping the corporatization of prisons and ensuring that once mass incarceration is dealt with, it does not come up again under a new guise. The 13 th effectively demonstrates that criminalization has been a persistent feature of anti-Black racism. Because at this point, after you see 13th, silence in this case is consent. DuVernay is exactly right to insist that criminalization has been and remains yoked to racism. The film was directed by Ava DuVernay and it explores the issues of race inequality in the United States prison systems. When the word is uttered by Alexander or Bryan Stevenson or Henry Louis Gates Jr.
In a time of polarized attitudes about mass incarceration, brutality, and the explosion of for-profit prisons and their affiliates, director interviews social activists, academics, journalists, and political figures to make the case that today's prisons, which house millions of persons of color, are simply the next incarnation of the centuries-old U. That clause reads that slavery shall no longer exist in the U. A few names include Henry Louis Gates, Jr. However the next actions leave the audience shocked. For this reason, deleting the clause in the 13th Amendment will not, once and for all, end racial slavery.