Aug 11, 2019
Welcome back to another week of reviews here at One Movie Punch. It’s been crazy around here at the One Movie Punch Secret Volcano Lair. We relocated here after the One Movie Punch Secret Island Base was invaded a while back. It was a whole thing. Anyway, this week we have six Certified Fresh films, including the debut of One Movie Spawn, a French romantic comedy, an Italian thriller from Andrew, a music documentary from One Movie Spouse, the best alligator movie I’ve ever seen, and today’s documentary, which I’ll be discussing shortly. As for the seventh movie, well... you’ll just have to tune in tomorrow to find out.
Last week we posted our first ever Patreon exclusive episode, which was part one of our full interview with David McCracken for “Bullitt County” (Episode #549). This week we’ll bring you part two of that interview, where we discuss “Bullitt County” and the future of Mr. Pictures.
Here just a taste of what you’ll be missing:
DAVID MCCRACKEN: “He was cutting, and I think we were a couple days into shooting the kitchen stuff, and he called me up and he said, ‘Hey, what do you think about split screens?’ And I said, ‘Oh yeah! Yeah, that sounds great!’ And so, pretty much like all the kitchen stuff with the split screens is a first cut.“
If you want to hear the whole interview, just head over to patreon.com/onemoviepunch and sign up to contribute monthly at any level. All sponsors get access to exclusive content and will have the opportunity to force me to review one movie of their choice, as long as we haven’t reviewed it, with just a few exceptions. Upcoming content includes complete interviews with Laurence Fuller, Kyle D. Hester, and experimental segments like “One Movie Punch: Zero Percent”, where I’ll be reviewing a film which received the lowest possible score at Rotten Tomatoes. All contributions go to paying our expenses and growing with our audience.
Today’s classic review is a documentary about the real-life events which have inspired a wave of films that examine the relationship between communities of color and law enforcement, like yesterday’s review for “The Hate U Give” (Episode #559). “Whose Streets?” (2017) is a grassroots look at the events surrounding the Ferguson Uprising in 2014, detailing the murder of Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson, and the demonstrations that followed. It currently sits at a 98% Certified Fresh rating at Rotten Tomatoes and an 81 Must See at Metacritic. You won’t be the same after seeing it.
Before the review, however, we’ll be running the trailer for “Preacher Six”, an independent feature in its final funding campaign. If you want to contribute, head on over to www.gofundme.com/preachersixfinalfilmcampaign and give at any amount. Some great incentives are available, including having your name listed in the credits and on IMDB. It doesn’t get any more independent than crowdfunded cinema.
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Here we go!
<< PREACHER SIX FILM TRAILER >>
Today’s movie is “Whose Streets?” (2017), the Magnolia Pictures documentary written by Sabaah Folayan and directed in collaboration with Damon Davis. The film follows the wrongful death of Michael Brown by Officer Darren Wilson, and the aftermath of unrest when residents took to the streets to protest against a variety of injustices, with lasting effects on the city and the nation.
I often feel the American middle class experiences cognitive dissonance with it comes to the many contradictions in our society. We have the utmost respect for our soldiers, even as some have committed the most horrible atrocities as a military and many veterans lack the post-war support they need. We teach our children to share and work together as kids, then to compete against their friends as their education progresses. And most importantly, we hold a massive respect for law enforcement even as the data shows they largely discriminate against people of color in every step of the process.
Cognitive dissonance can cause a number of different responses in someone unwilling to change either belief. Some folks will try to justify whatever event causes the dissonance, leaping on a convenience store camera implicating Brown in a robbery, or any number of concerns about Brown’s lifestyle, even though he was unarmed and not resisting. Many others, including the media, simply avoided reporting many parts of the aftermath, overfocusing on the immediate riots and police in the streets, and rarely following the many city council meetings and investigations that followed, ultimately proving that the police department was discriminatory. That’s what makes this documentary so important, because systemic racism in police enforcement is a real concern that affects people of color everywhere.
It’s a truth our society needs to confront more than ever, because there’s also a third way cognitive dissonance affects people: radicalization. I’m not talking about the protestors in Ferguson, but members of the police force who now dress for war against our own citizens, and some police supporters who hold white supremacist views, especially near St. Louis. Folayan and Davis capture that radicalization in real-time in the aftermath of Brown’s death, for everyone to see, along with the organizers and resisters who sustained their direct actions at all levels to expose this problem. We should not see our police forces arming themselves for war against their own citizens. We should be holding our police forces accountable.
“Whose Streets?” (2017) documents a community-level struggle against a racist police department. That’s not an opinion, but a factual finding of the Federal Department of Justice, based on mountains of submitted evidence and analysis. It’s not a problem that resolves itself with resignations, but one that requires educating a public about police brutality and unjust enforcement. I can think of no better documentary to support this effort, and believe everyone should see this film, and if necessary, combat their own cognitive dissonance.