Crash – Filtered
This drama tries to take on racial discrimination. After opening with a car crash, the story flashes back to the lives of each person involved in the crash. Jean (Sandra Bullock), the wife of wealthy Brentwood District Attorney (Brendan Fraser), trusts and respects nobody who does not have white skin and a middle-class-or-higher income, but the crash causes her to face the reality of her anger and her lack of intimate relationships. The wife of a TV director learns to forgive and to offer grace when she receives critical help from a police officer (Matt Dillon) who sexually molested her only 24 hours earlier, simply because he viewed her as a lowly black woman. In contrast, Officer Hanson (Ryan Phillippe) appears to be culturally sensitive and respectful of all people until he finds himself facing death. Unknown connections in these intertwined lives are not revealed until the end.
Set in Los Angeles, “Crash” is a film with multiple storylines involving people from various walks of life. It is very moving in that it tries to portray the oftentimes severe effect that racism has on everyday life. A variety of characters include white cops, Persian shop-owners, a Latino locksmith, African American guys who steal cars, an African American DA assistant, a female aide to the governor, and a white governor and his wife. All of these lives are intertwined throughout the film as the people involved deal with racism either in their own hearts or externally.
This movie was very moving and really made me stop and think. It was very well done in that it not only involved the most predominate struggle with racism (blacks and whites), but also several other ethnic groups. There were a few parts that you should be aware of if you are viewing this with a young person. One was when a black man used the word “nigger” about eight times while talking to his buddy about other black men. There was also a part where a Persian man goes to the home of a Latino man with the intent to kill him over a misunderstanding and instead he shoots the man’s daughter (as it turns out, the gun had blanks in it, but before you find that out, it is shocking to say the least). This movie had me sitting in silence when it was over…it’s a jolt and promotes thinking. Dove approves it because of the reality of racism and the need for it to be overcome. It is a great movie for discussion, but just be aware of the above mentioned parts.