“You think you’re black?? You think those are your people??? They’re not”
If your only window into how American police officers deal with black people is what you see in our media and Hollywood, from an outsiders point of view, you have come to the following conclusions:
- All cops are white
- All cops are racist
- If you are a non-white cop, you are a traitor to your race
- Black people get attacked for simply existing
- Cops will pull guns on black people within seconds and kill them in even less time.
I bring this up because screenwriter Peter A. Dowling is a British white guy who likely envisioned how the New Orleans Police Department operates based on what he saw on television and then turned it up to 11. Black and Blue takes place in a fantasy version of New Orleans where nobody speaks with a southern/cajun accent and is about as subtle as smashing someone’s skull in with a brick in the middle of a busy mall.
If you saw the trailer for this movie, you probably know exactly how this places out before you watched it and as much as I hoped those assumptions were wrong, they weren’t. In the first minute of the film, you have our protagonist, a black female officer, jogging down the street of an affluent neighborhood where she is immediately pulled over by two white male police officers who slam her into the wall and pull a gun on her, only for the racist cops to realize that she is a police officer and let her go with an ominous KKK warning that she isn’t welcomed here…all because she was jogging. This is the first scene we are given before the credits are even done rolling.
Within seconds, the theme of the movie is clear, all cops are dirty, they hate black people and see them all as criminals. Without the slightest exaggeration, there are four different scenes in this film were a police officer aggressively slams down a black person who was literally doing nothing and the second the black person says a syllable, the cop points a gun at their head. This happens FOUR TIMES within the first hour of the movie. It became such a trope by the time it happened to Tyrese, I audibly laughed in the theater.
Now before anyone tries to tell me I’m reading too much into a movie that is supposed to be fiction, director Deon Taylor is on record saying that the influence of this movie is the fact that 25% of people killed by police officers are black. No context is given to those numbers at all which means the only take away is they killed them for being black…despite the fact that the other 75% of those killed by cops without context were not.
“When you make a film like ‘Black and Blue,who could say eight days before the release you would see two incidents that got national attention surrounding cameras. You want to have a film that’s actually going to speak to it,” Taylor said. “But you also want to make sure you’ll make a movie that isn’t preaching but rather telling your side of things. I feel that’s what a lot of films get wrong. Films like ‘Black and Blue’ remind us of an important lesson, to be the change we want to see in the world. If you see something, say something. It doesn’t matter if you work for the police department. It doesn’t matter if you work for the convalescent home. It doesn’t matter if you’re a kindergarten teacher. If you see something you need to open your mouth and say something.”
What you get is a film that is made for black people to watch, see police officers as evil racist murders so they can nod in approval and say “Yep, that’s how they treat us”. The problem is if Taylor wanted his nod to black lives matter to be subtle, the film borders on parody when it comes to the way the officers are portrayed. Actual white nationalists aren’t as racist as the people in this movie. David Duke himself would watch some of these scenes and say “well that was bit aggressive”. This is the narrative that the left wants everyone to believe as fact, that cops have such a bloodlust to end black lives that the depiction in this film is supposed to reflect reality and not something out of a Judge Dredd movie.
You have some decent actors here, they aren’t the problem with this movie, in a vacuum, this is probably a solid Amazon Prime rental, the issue here is the script. If you think Christian movies are “too preachy” because you hear the name Jesus enough times to exorcise a demon, then this film is the equivalent of the street prophet who just brought the bullhorn with the siren attached.
Black and Blue is a lovely peaceful action movie that will surely do nothing but bring police officers and the black community together and make them more understanding and accepting of each others differences leading to an era of harmony…