Black Roles in Film

Have you ever wondered why in movies, the white characters are typically seen as heroes or the black person in the film is always seen as the loud, angry woman or thuggish guy? Some examples of this negative connotation in film are some famous shows such as Proud Family or Martin, etc. where the light skin girl is the star character and the darker skinned girl is her “understudy” essentially playing the loud, angry woman. The more explicit example of this negative connotation is Gina and Pam in Martin: Gina is supposedly the “prettier friend” with the boyfriend and more showing time (meaning we see her more in the episodes than Pam). Pam is portrayed as the loud friend that is always picking an argument with the men on the show, mostly Martin.

I think that the lack of black screenwriters causes these types of issues to come about due to white screenwriters thinking it is okay because they think that these characteristics are how black people actually act or there are not enough black screenwriters to come out and actually produce films with the opposite of these connotations. This brings me to the point of the recent uproar of the film “Get Out” written by Jordan Peele. “Get Out” is a horror film based around ideas of racism and interracial relationships. In the film, the girlfriend who is white invites her black boyfriend to spend the weekend with her parents who are also white. While there, the boyfriend experiences different horrific events revolving around racism against blacks. Reviews on the movie (from white people) are essentially saying that the movie is racist against white people, they do not like it, etc. but the joke is that black people have been portrayed negatively in film for YEARS and one movie portraying a white family as racist is absurd?