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American Movie - Crash - Book Report/Review Example

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[Your full name] April 19, 2012 American Movie- Crash In the Lion Gate films’ Crash, the award-winning writer/director/producer, Paul Haggis, has successfully portrayed the issues of race and gender that made a group of strangers to physically and emotionally bump into each other in Los Angeles…
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[Your full April 19, American Movie- Crash In the Lion Gate films’ Crash, the award-winning writer/director/producer, Paul Haggis, has successfully portrayed the issues of race and gender that made a group of strangers to physically and emotionally bump into each other in Los Angeles. After successful career in television, Paul Haggis came into making feature films, and became so successful that he was known as the “Million Dollar Baby.” He won the Best Picture award in the 2005 Academy Awards. The screenplay has been presented by Haggis and Bobby Moresco. Released in 2004, the movie has been made in the United States. The cast includes: Don Cheadle (as Graham Waters), Jennifer Esposito (as Ria), Brendan Eraser (as Rick), Sandra Bullock (as Jean), Chris Bridges (as Anthony), Larenz Tate (as Peter), Terrence Howard (as Cameron), Thandie Newton (as Christine), Matt Dillon (as Officer Ryan), Ryan Phillipe (as Officer Hansen), Michael Pina (as Daniel), and Shaun Toub (as Farhad). The movie is about several stories going on in two days at Los Angeles portraying “the complexities of racial tolerance in contemporary America” (Crash). The plot supports the social perspective that discusses racial discrimination, and its effects on those who suffer from it. The filmmaker has tried to convey the message that racial discrimination should be put to an end, and peace and harmony should be spread for the survival of mankind (Howard 131). Why I found this film attractive was that the film portrayed a very important social issue which prevails in the American society- that is, racism. To explain this, it is important to describe, in brief, a few scenes from the film that show racism. In one scene, Graham Waters and Ria get struck by a car. Ria gets out and encounters an Asian woman, Kim Lee, who was in the other car. They blame each other for the hit, and make racial comments on each other. Ria tells her that she is a detective. She mocks the Asian woman many a times in the scene, by making fun of her word ‘break’. She says that she is shocked that an Asian woman dared to hit her. In another scene, Farhad, a Persian-immigrant, and the shopkeeper, from whom he is buying a handgun, get into a fight as the shopkeeper did not like the Persian, Farhad. He did not like him speaking Persian. Dorri selects a red box of bullets, and Farhad leaves the shop furiously. This scene not only shows hatred between different races, but also depicts language miscommunication between cultures. There is a scene showing the incident in which Jean’s SUV is carjacked by two African-American men. This hijacking by black men adds fuel to the fire, and her hatred for African-Americans grows. This is where the filmmaker has tried to show how much people hate people of other races. I found the movie very interesting in that it talks about a very important issue that prevails in American cultural context. I experienced cultural relativism while watching the movie because I think that all beliefs and values are culture-specific. Therefore, the characters behaved toward other races according to what they learnt from their cultures. People think that they are liberal, but they are not able to come out of the small frame of mind that makes them hate people belonging to other races, casts, color and creed (Jones). The economic inequality between races, the white dominance, and the consumerist economic exploitation, gave rise to the Black Radical Congress in the early 21st century, which aimed at targeting the system of oppression that kept the blacks away from occupational, social and industrial opportunities (Johnson and Stanford 207). Why people of African descent face problems in today’s economics is not simply a matter of expression of ethnic practices; rather, it goes back to the convoluted race and gender histories reflecting transformations in social and political processes, resulting in oppression that occurred in conflicting ways and generated a system of race and gender economic oppression. The need is to create awareness among people through movies like Crash, regarding racism and its elimination. In short, the film has a universal message, and relates to other cultures in that it talks about racial discrimination toward people belonging to different cultural and ethnic backgrounds. The universal message relates a lot to African-Americans, and shows how they have been disadvantaged in the American culture. The film depicts the American society in a true sense, and conveys the message that racism should be brought to an end, because it is infecting the American society like an epidemic. Works Cited Crash. “Synopsis.” Lion Gate Films, n.d. 13 Dec 2011. < http://www.crashfilm.com/>. Howard, Philip S.S. “Unearthing Colonial Theology: A Critical Interrogation of the Movie Crash.” Crash Politics and Antiracism: Interrogations of Liberal Race Discourse. USA: Peter Lang, 2008. Johnson, Ollie A., and Karin L. Stanford. Black Political Organizations in the Post-Civil Rights Era. USA: Rutgers University Press, 2002. Jones, Gregory Alan. Racism and Bad Faith. USA: Oregon State University, 2000. Read More
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