Ah yeah I was waiting for this movie to come out for a while now. Sheeeeeeeeeeit, the only person I recognized was the kid from Everybody Hates Chris but the trailer appealed to me in a way that made me want to check this out. Now in New York City movie tickets are 15 dead prez my dude… (legally that is). For a film to make me wanna check it out after work on a Tuesday night when I could be live tweeting The Flash? Thats a big deal. I walked up into theater excited for this and if some white people were in attendance feeling like how I felt watching certain scenes in Django then even better.
The story involves the bi-racial “militant” Sam White (Tessa Thompson) who runs the radio show “Dear white people”. The show is here throwing quick jabs at white folks “Dear white people using instagram. We get it. You go on hikes.” (it makes you say “fuck why didn’t I think of this”?). Also on campus is Colandrea “Coco” Conners (Teyonah Parris) The 2014 Toni Childs hits the scene as the upper echelon level black woman that gets wrapped up in the proposed reality TV show audition that’s being hosted at the school.
Later Sam surprisingly becomes voted in as the new head of the predominately black Armstrong Parker residence house (that is in threat of becoming open to all students and losing its tradition as a backbone for the campus black society). Troy Fairbanks (Brandon Bell) square jaw’d popular/ politician type (also the Dean’s son) used to date Sam and is now the one (again surprisingly) handing over the keys to the kingdom to her along with all the responsibilities.
When a discussion in the residence dinning hall gets interrupted by Kurt Fletcher’s (Kyle Gallner) white privilege (He is the president of the university’s son), Sam shuts his shit down with the quickness, kicking Kurt and his friends the hell outta dodge.
We then begin the undertow that leads us towards the path that culminates to a party that gets out of hand and causes issues between races (not going spoil the surprise). The story gets reported by Lionel Higgens (Tyler Williams) who is the black outcast albeit by his sexuality and interests.
The film is good man. There is a lot of story and character interactions that lead up to the party. Along the way we hear shit from certain people in the film that imitates what we hear every day in real life. Racial microaggressions, HELLO! The film does a good job recounting what a person of color would feel and how they would react to certain situations which will always be relevant. . One example was waiting 40 minutes to be served then and your choices on tipping, A). Nothing B.) 15% or the last option C.) Over compensate to show that the stereotype isn’t true.
The hair touching without asking…
and even with the fucking asking
Lionel who has been growing his hair out says, “Its like a black hole for white people’s hands at this point”. The line that hit me the hardest was when a white student tells Lionel,
“Please, you’re only technically black”
ANYWAY!… There are a LOT of fun quotables in the movie as well.
Lionel: Sooooooooo you’re a trekker, eh?
Troy: Aye! What happens in the dorm room stays in the room.
Lionel: Some could argue that its actually a pretty black show.
Troy: How’d that work out for you?
Lionel: Yeaaaaah, not well.
My favorite moment comes when shit hits the fan and the Black student union questions if they have the strength in numbers to proceed to confront the problem.
Sungmi (Naomi Ko): We can get the Asian & Latino student unions to join up with us. They’re meeting just across the way.
(Everyone is taken back in surprise at her knowledge of this)
Sungmi: …You guys have better snacks.
I. Was. Dying.
My only major gripe with the movie is the way Coco gets left out. Whereas we see the curve ball interracial relationship working out fine. Coco and the character we saw her the most honest with (I won’t spoil who) don’t get to work out due to (insert excuse here). She questions what he really wants for himself then goes off on her lonesome. I couldn’t help but feel this just reiterates the black men not wanting/appreciating black women stigmata man. Even tho we saw him left his white girlfriend (The University President’s daughter mind you) after being with Coco, their similarities and surprising honesty with each other (even if it was for one scene). But I can put that on their character development not given enough time to bloom.
All in all it was a good movie. It was funny and served its purpose, I don’t think I’ll be telling folks this is the movie they need to see for 2014 but it’s one I would suggest. A dude ain’t got no regrets. Ironically mac and cheese is referenced in the final scenes of the movie and I went out and got some feeling good about my life choices.
Bonus: No one asked to touch my hair either.