While the purpose of most movies is to entertain, some such as Blackkklansman have another in mind. This film follows the true story of Ron Stallworth, the first African-American cop in the Colorado Springs area in the 1970s, as he and his fellow officers begin an undercover investigation of the KKK. While it was a hard movie to watch, the message makes it important for all people today to watch.
All viewers would experience something different throughout the film. I felt guilty as I watched these characters struggle. Although I strive to treat everyone equally, I felt as though I was a part of this group known for hurting others physically and emotionally to the point where they feel like they can't leave their house. Several white cast members discussed similar uncomfortable feelings. Topher Grace played David Duke, the national head of the KKK, and he mentioned feeling negatively even acting out the offensive nature of his character. He explained that saying all the hate-filled words made him feel so guilty, he would need to take a break from filming. I can't imagine what it must've felt like for a black person to watch.
Blackkklansman showed that there are good and bad people on either side of history. Many people look at the story and view two sides: the white men of the KKK and the black victims. However, through the film we remember the many other people in this situation who are more in a grey area. Many people, black and white, were somewhere in the middle. Throughout the film, audience members met white characters who weren't outwardly racist, but allowed others who were rude to do as they pleased, which is a vital lesson. Although other members of the police were generally kind, well-intentioned individuals, when they defended bigots, they were as much of the problem as KKK members themselves. On the other end, the black rights group has members who encourage their peers to kill white people, saying this is the only way to create peace. In the end, the most successful ventures are the ones which black and white people work together. The most prevalent example is the teamwork between Ron Stallworth and Flip Zimmerman during their undercover mission. Although these two seem different, they are both minorities, as Stallworth is black and Zimmerman is Jewish. Through this teamwork, they were able to limit the damage their local KKK was causing in Colorado Springs.
The most important part of the movie is comparing it to racial relations in America today. Although the beliefs of the KKK members seem antiquated and to some these issues seem old or overdone. However, the end of the film gave a shocking reminder that this is not true. After showing the events of the 1970s, the movie cuts to scenes from today, showing people attacking Black Lives Matter protestors. Watching these scenes put me on the verge of tears and I felt ashamed as I realized the "happy ending" in the plot of the movie was only temporary as the black people in America.
This important movie is one that will be remembered for a long time, as it captures audience members and leaves a lasting impact. I'll admit, it is uncomfortable to watch. However, these negative feelings cause us to work to make life better. Blackkklansman wakes us up and shows us what is really happening in our country and why it needs to stop. Whether you decide to march in Washington or make changes in your community, it can help change the country for the better. Even small-scale change is easy to make, by treating others with respect and stepping in when others don't. Whether you're black or white, this is the first step to a better America.