Don’t Skip THE HATE U GIVE
Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give movie adaptation will be hitting theaters on October 5th. Per the law of the land, the book is better than the movie 9 times out of 10. However, if you choose to skip the book (it’s great, I promise) you should still watch the movie for the following reasons:
1. It Captures History
This book captures the essence of the day we live in. It paints the dark times of police brutality and the grey areas of false compassion, along with the brighter tones of family and music to cope with. It has strong potential to be read as historical fiction in the future, because of the authenticity it brings. Starr Carter is able to walk between two worlds and narrate both of them eloquently. She feels the tension in our world and is candid in its effect on her life. The realm of fiction and reality begin to blur with the sheer force of its relatability.
This movie is based on social commentary and meant to be reflected upon. It effectively shows social roles and examples of how to use privilege to benefit marginalized people. People from all walks of life can see how they would fit in Starr’s life and either see their struggle or see how to alleviate the pressures of the struggle as an ally. Similar movies with a majority black cast don’t put forth examples of what an effective ally can do. This film does and provides a needed paradigm of beneficial uses to privilege. This movie raises questions and answers them with hard conversations.
3. The Music
The title of the book is a take on TuPac’s lyrics. That’s not where the musical inspiration stops. Songs from different eras and genres take on nuanced meanings throughout the film. From the Fresh Prince theme song to Jodeci, a wide array of musical influence is peppered in The Hate U Give and we can expect to see that translated on the big screen. Musical moments are found that can speak to anyone and everyone.
4. The Book is Incredible
Whether or not you are in the boat that reads the book first or the one that reads it second, you should still get your hands on this book. Angie Thomas paints a fine picture filled with tragedy and comedy. Her words reflect deeply on the lives of the characters, and the pages weave together a strong narrative on life after tragedy and standing up for you values.
This movie brings a slew of black actors in a film that depicts the black experience in a meaningful way. It highlights the struggles of code switching and identity, an exploration that needs to take place. It’s important for black youth to relate to a film that centers them. The Hate U Give is not a movie that can be whitewashed without losing its essence. This movie serves as an example of the importance of the voices of people of color.
When you get a chance, I encourage you to assemble a group of friends and watch it. Even further than that though, you should reflect on it yourself and then start a dialogue on your discoveries. The Hate U Give is about speaking out; use this as an opportunity to exercise your voice.