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Crash - Movie Review

Essay by   •  May 16, 2013  •  Book/Movie Report  •  825 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,328 Views

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After watching the movie "Crash" (2004), I found that it touched on many important and relevant issues that affect our society. Some of the major themes of the movie included racism, family structures and bonds, violence, sexual violence, crime, politics and international human trafficking. The characters in the film also represented various social locations that offer a small representation of the diversity in our society. The film depicted an upper class, white, married couple who were existing on such a superficial level that they became disconnected from themselves, each other and others around them. The detective that struggles with his identity as a black man and a police officer working in a racist force. A Persian family that fights to maintain their identities and the uniqueness of their culture in the face of a racist hate-crime. A hard-working, loving husband and father that faces prejudice and racism to support his family. Two teenager carjackers that can justify and sanction their actions with religious faith. And while these privileges and oppressions are focused on in the film to illustrate character strengths and weaknesses, it was evident that each of these identifiers was not what defined their humanness.

At first, I found the dialogue and language in the film to be shocking. Racial and sexual slurs were ingrained into the character's speech, with little censorship. I realize, however, that this was used intentionally and purposefully to shock and engage the audience, as well as for realism. This language is prevalent in North American society, even if attempts are made to hide or conceal it. I also found that because the film is depicted in such a provocative way, that the characters and their stories became more real, with deeper complexity. Because all of the characters were both flawed and capable human beings, I could identify with their stories on a deeper, more personal level. I found this film beneficial as it demonstrates how humans are complex beings, unable to be defined by a single factor, such as race, gender, age, or class.

The character of Jean, the upper class, white woman was one who stood out to me. Jean was so removed from herself and her life that when she needed to draw on her personal strength to support her through a traumatic event, she found that she could not recognize the person that she had become. She was a multifaceted woman who was overtly racist to the locksmith working in her home and to her housekeeper, simply to justify her feelings of personal hollowness. The incredible levels of justification characters used in response to their actions seemed to be a prevailing theme throughout the movie. The methods used and lengths characters went to in order to "right" the actions with themselves, others or God, were particularly surprising to me.

I found myself having a difficult time relating to Sergeant Ryan, the racist police officer

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