Film Review: Racial Satire ‘Dear White People’ is Heated, Hilarious

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Average: 5 (1 vote)

CHICAGO – A new voice has everyone’s attention with the shaking-head comedy “Dear White People,” a necessary “Wake UP!” to a melting pot nation that still needs to get itself together, even if a black president is in the White House. Razor-sharp satire is the weapon that debut writer/director Justin Simien aims at a society that still exhibits behavior both unconsciously and consciously, both embarrassing (fascination with black hair) and grotesque (the party life’s appropriation of blackface). Equally heated and hilarious, “Dear White People” shares with a wide audience necessary criticism in the never-ending discussion about race. Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

The microcosm of “Dear White People” is an Ivy League school, where four black students are confronted with situations of self vs. identity. Sam (Tessa Thompson) is an outspoken student who challenges her fellow students through her schoolwork (a short film titled “Rebirth of a Nation”) and radio show of which Simien’s film gets its own title from. She is elected as head of her strictly black dorm, where she champions the idea of non-diversified housing, whilst hiding her own sexual relationship with a white peer (Justin Dobies).

Leaving the head-of-house position is Troy (Brandon P. Bell), the son of the university’s Dean Fairbanks (Dennis Haysbert). In a way to divert the path wished for by his father, Troy auditions for work at the prestigious Pastiche humor magazine, an operation run by open racist & white guy Kurt Fletcher (Kyle Gallner). Troy shares the same ideals as Lionel Higgins (Tyler James Williams) a meek geek with a giant afro assigned by the college’s main newspaper to get the inside scoop on Sam’s agenda. Opposing the cause of Sam and her radio show is Coco (Teyonah Parris), a young woman conflicted about her place in a society that has become, in her words, “so addicted to being black.”

“Dear White People” is now playing in Chicago and other select cities. Featuring Tyler James Williams, Tessa Thompson, Brandon P Bell, Teyonah Paris, Kyle Gallner, Justin Dobies, and Teyonah Parris. Written and directed by Justin Simien. Rated “R”

StarContinue reading for Nick Allen’s full review of “Dear White People”

Dear White People
“Dear White People”
Photo credit: Roadside Attractions

StarContinue reading for Nick Allen’s full review of “Dear White People”

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