Chronicling community action, revolutionary and revealing thought

Saturday, August 05, 2006

There's Something in the Water

I've seen some people's written reactions to "Lady In The Water", and just flicked channels to see Reel to Reel's movie critics totally missing the point (either deliberately or unintentionally, being "White Males" and having the attendant cultural blinders... I'm referring to the academic standpoint)

I remember talking to another black chick of West Indian extraction on the subway, coming home from watching said film, commenting on Pirates of the Caribbean and its depiction of Caribs as cannibals (even though, according to their own oral history, they were never that). I mentioned that I'd read in a major magazine that a point of contention for Disney, when severing ties with M.Night Shyamalan, was that he put himself in the role of the writer. I know I was actively ignoring the persons around us eavesdropping, including the white guy sitting next to her; can't speak for her however. This isn't the time for me to be dealing with people who had that White Guilt expression (or its close cousin, White Realisation) on their faces.

(There's this whole academic thing about White Guilt, if you're wondering what I'm going on about.)

But we did agree on this: He plays a person who writes an important document that, according to his own character's words, says thing about politicians, things "people don't want to hear" and aren't ready to hear. His character is a person of colour, and ends up getting killed. Now, why, oh why, would a big-budget company like Disney have a problem of M.Night Shyamalan depicing that...?

Maybe it takes a person outside the dominant culture to see it, or not allow others to ignore/downplay it.

(snarky) "Oh yeah, there's ego there, allright...."