Movie Review: Black Panther

BIG NEWS about this movie!! Gollum and Bilbo Baggins appear together again!!

It’s actually very cool how Hollywood works sometimes. People you’ve grown accustomed to seeing in a certain light step completely out of character, showing their real talent. Such is the case with Andy Serkis and Martin Freeman as they match wits and skill against a breathtaking special effects backdrop. Stan Lee makes a brilliant cameo as usual.
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What you read above is an example of what we’ve been putting up with throughout the years. Hollywood totally marginalizes Black talent, because we HAVE no country, no industry, no representation. Very few of us have slipped through the cracks to achieve the ever elusive superstar rating………. But wait……………. This IS a movie review

Black Panther is set in a technologically advanced African society known as Wakanda. The country uses its own natural resources and thrives despite refusing to trade with the outside world. They are steeped in cultural heritage and are socially advanced enough to have their top military personnel be an elite, all female guard (like Libya once had).

It’s also a recurring theme throughout the Marvel Universe to have a conscientious hero. Black Panther is no different. Chadwick Boseman does an excellent job of communicating the inner turmoil of a protagonist. Time and again heroes are tested with the choice to either take the easy way out, or do what is best for all. As King T’Challa (aka Panther), Boseman is a great example for his constituents.

The fictional nation Wakanda is depicted as a hidden tech oasis, secretly masking itself as a “SH**Hole country” in order to ward off outsiders. The action is non-stop, and if any member of the star studded cast managed to outshine Boseman’s charismatic Panther, it was the fierce Danai Gurira. In her role of Okoye, Gurira was the true star of the movie for me. She brings a masterful complexity to a character that could have easily been played as a one-dimensional, angry fighting machine. The end result…. She literally STEALS every scene she appears in.

When you have a movie like this, it stirs certain emotions within a people who have constantly been depicted as less than. Around the world African diaspora have been reconnecting to their culture via the way they dress. This movie has been instrumental in creating a celebratory mood among attendees. This is the POWER of ART.

I could stop there, and that would be a great movie review.
While watching, I am thankful that we can be represented in such a positive light. I intend to support the cast and crew by seeing Black Panther twice……… HOWEVER

Let us not forget that SLAVERY has returned to Africa. Modern day slaves are being openly traded in Libya, with many destined to become victims of organ harvesting. Angola and Zimbabwe now use Chinese currency. Other countries are succumbing to European colonial taxes and the high interest rates they have been saddled with. Africa’s diamond trade is still run by Cecil Rhodes’ DeBeers company, and does not benefit African economies. Minerals are mined by children for cell phones and other consumer goods. Sudanese refugees are fleeing to (and now being kicked out of) Israel. Political interests see emergency food being held at checkpoints while weapons flow freely. Pharmaceutical companies perform human tests on the population.

But hey…  I did look DAMN good in my Daishiki on opening day.
No judgement 🙂 We should enjoy this movie and support it 100%
STILL… come away with ideas of taking positive action. Be ready to learn more about the world and let’s DISCUSS what can be done rather than constantly fighting. Stan Lee’s vision of Africa’s potential should not be bigger than that of Africa’s Children.

P.S. If you’ve read this far… Please look up the Songhai Empire. It was the last African dynasty; history BEFORE we became slaves. Once I became aware of Songhai my shackles begin to fall off.