Day against racial discrimination: the films to be recovered

Day against racial discrimination: the films to be recovered

Day against racial discrimination

The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is celebrated every year on 21 March. This date was chosen to commemorate the same day in 1960 when, in South Africa, the police opened fire on a group of black demonstrators causing deaths and injuries. These were still the years fully involved in apartheid, however, if we look closely at the most recent news events, it seems that history sadly repeats itself even today. But which films against racial discrimination do we appreciate most? Cinema has always shown great attention in wanting to bring similar themes to the stage. Not only the great dramatic films with a historical flavor, but also curious experiments declined on other less predictable genres. From sports to animated films, passing through horror and, why not, science fiction: the minority theme has always encouraged directors to tell high-caliber stories with original frames.

against racial discrimination

Sports Movie: Race - The Color of Victory Historical Drama: 12 Years a Slave Animated Movie: Zootropolis Science Fiction Movie: District 9 Horror Movie: Escape - Get Out Biographical Movie: Malcolm X Comedy: Green Book

Race - The color of victory

In English, the term race can indicate both a sporting event and the concept of race. It is therefore perfect for telling the incredible story (competitive and personal) of Jesse Owens. At the 1936 Berlin Olympics, in full Nazi regime, the African American athlete won four gold medals: an affront that he knows of humiliation to the absurd Hitler-style racist policies.

Race - The color of victory tells of this unique and unforgettable sporting event. Ideal especially for a young audience (it is one of the most popular films against racial discrimination among school desks), the film is captivating and exciting. In the cast stands the presence of Jeremy Irons but the most interesting curiosity is due to the choice of the protagonist. In fact, John Boyega was initially contacted for the role of Owens. But he refused to participate in the Star Wars saga.

12 Years a Slave

Produced by Brad Pitt (who also appears in a brief cameo on the finale), 12 Years a Slave is not alone a film against racial discrimination, but also one of the most intense films of recent years. Nominated for nine Oscars, he won three highly valued statuettes: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actress (Lupita Nyong'o) and Best Non-Original Screenplay.

The story tells of Solomon Northup's absurd experience that , for twelve years, he was forced into slavery on plantations in Louisiana. There are many moments of dramatic violence that have troubled the audience. The film, present in the Amazon Prime Video catalog, tries to challenge the viewer's gaze by putting him in front of a senseless violence that raises more than a few questions. Unmissable.


Even animation has often found a way to try to tackle thorny but important issues. Of course, the speech becomes a little less evident, more metaphorical. Yet it would be wrong to consider these works only as mere entertainment for children. A project like Zootropolis, for example, does not have many minuses to investigate the power that fear can exert on individuals and becomes a film against racial discrimination in all respects.

The city in which it is set the film (available on Disney +) is inhabited by numerous animal species. The forced coexistence of these characters leaves room for some disagreements due to their needs. Zootropolis is a film characterized by stereotypical characters. Not to limit the processing, but to underline the difficulty of a forced inclusion. All these dynamics will lead to increasingly serious consequences until, little by little, the vase overflows. On the surface it might seem like yet another film with "talking animals". Digging a bit, however, one of the most careful and precise films emerges in dealing with such a slippery issue.

District 9

Even science fiction often uses metaphors to talk about certainly more stringent and newspapers. District 9 is a great example of this process. On the sky of Johannesburg, South Africa, a gigantic alien spaceship peeps out to be however caged by humans. The creatures inside are ghettoized inside a sort of lager where they will have to suffer the oppression of the "hosts".

The terrible plague of Apartheid comes back to life on the big screen, obviously disguised as a film science fiction but with the same tenor. Produced by Peter Jackson, the work was an unexpected success and even managed to get four Oscar nominations (including one for best feature film). It is one of the most original anti-racial discrimination films of the 2000s.

Escape - Get Out

It was the case of the year at the US box office. Spending just $ 5 million, Escape - Get Out grossed about $ 175 million. Jordan Peele's debut film is a tense and claustrophobic horror. Starting from the most classic comedy (are the references to Guess who's coming to dinner?), The film leads the viewer into an endless nightmare from which one would like to escape.

Racism is without doubt the cornerstone of the entire project. Hatred and contempt for African Americans emerge little by little over the minutes, gradually taking on ever greater dimensions. Thus, a "normal" family becomes the mirror of a society still far from accepting integration into its deepest fabric. The film is a ruthless and cynical portrait of the years most contemporary to us. The film also won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. The same director will again be confronted with the same theme and the same style in another film against racial discrimination: Us.

Malcom X

The American director Spike Lee has made this theme the fundamental value of his cinematography. Among the many titles suitable for dealing with such a topic, the one that perhaps stands out most for its historical significance is precisely Malcolm X. The biopic focuses on the figure of one of the most important activists for the rights of African Americans. The director directs it almost as if it were a blockbuster, without sparing on budget and time.

All the charisma and charm of the figure in question emerge also thanks to the talent of Denzel Washington who here gives one of the best interpretations of the his career. Lee's skill is not to return a hagiographic picture of the leader on the screen, but to try to investigate his personality by re-reading it as that of a tragic hero. One of the most necessary anti-racial films. A must see.

Green Book

Recalled by many critics as the feel good movie par excellence, Green Book is the last major anti-racial film (in chronological order) that he has tried to shed light on the racial issue. Managing to warm the hearts of viewers from all over the world and winning the Oscar for best film, the feature film tells the incredible friendship between an African American pianist and an Italian-born bouncer. Along the roads of America, the two will become more and more in tune and learn to reckon on how to best manage their hatred.

Directed by Peter Farrelly, the director of famous comedies such as Tutti crazy about Mary or Dumb & Dumber, the movie is just delightful. All the elements are in the right place and laughter will not be lacking. Everything, however, will obviously be conveyed by a decidedly bitter aftertaste that will characterize the flow of the film. Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali are in perfect harmony (the latter will also win an Oscar for his interpretation of him in this role). They also manage to restore all the nuances of a sincere and warm friendship capable of going beyond any prejudice. Green Book demonstrates how the racial question is above all a question of ignorance. So there is room for a great ode to culture. Which may not be the perfect cure, but it sure could help.

For these and other anti-racial films, check out the Netflix, Disney + and Amazon Prime Video catalogs.

Powered by Blogger.