Black Panther post-movie Reflection ~QPSK

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QP

Black Panther:
My first impressions from the trailer was excitement, it has a strong vibe of what to me feels like the modern African American identity. With a vibrant amount of action and a great accompanying sound track that brought the trailer together.

Coming into the movie itself, for me it had a great cast of male and female actors that were able to project strength and respect for their unique identities. There was a strong balance between the female and male casts, both having their unique presence on screen. The relationship dynamics between the characters was really charming with lots of banter and snide remarks which gave depth to what could have been a mundane ruling class family. And there was a great depth provided by Kill Monger in helping T’Challa grow as a leader, amazing video analysis of that — here

The action pace was spaced out well, and it was quite the typical action move stereotype of — hero gets approval, hero loses to enemy, hero comes back to redeem himself, which wasn’t too bad, just the typical I win because I’m the main character plot. What annoyed me more was the camera shifts during action scenes, when they were trying to make the action a lot more dynamic than it actually was. It just adds a layer of clutter to the scene and is a lazy way of improving action scenes. Great video on how Jacky Chan does his action scenes through the environment and a wide perspective — here

The story and plot seemed to revolve around the issues of Wakanda, although limited in scope, I think it’s a good introduction to the Black Panther story line and keeping the focus clearly on African and African American topics. I would say my only issue is that they don’t delve into the identities of the African culture thoroughly in this movie. It really feels like an American take on the African continent rather than being really immersed in the African identity. The Wakandan city is just full of standard “modern” tall buildings with a hut roof, the streets are just the stereotypical African villages that sells baskets and barbecue skewers? This was to portray a hidden African nation that has the modern technology to take on the Western world. It just seems a little lazy that the CG team did not think a little deeper about what a hyper modern African nation would be like, in their way of commerce, transportation and on the street level and how they would live.

But with all the talk of this movie pushing new boundaries for African identities, I think it does well to not shy away from these topics and push the African American actors to the forefront of Hollywood. It is a firm first step towards embracing the complex history of African history in America and does not shy away from addressing these topics. I think it is a great precursor for a more diverse and multiracial culture in the film industry.

SK

It’s really exciting to see the historically oppressed race of America dominate the Black Panther movie — an American blockbuster with a Black super hero. It is a significant moment because it is the respect that we have (finally) given to the non-Whites. We finally step out to embrace diversity.

Talented casts and crews made the movie enjoyable, especially the beautiful scenery of Wakanda and the illustration of the city of Wakanda. The soundtracks were spot on. The costumes were fabulous, they portrayed the character of the roles well. I truly enjoy the details that the crews put into the movie. It is interesting to see they still preserve the cultural identities of Africans though the city is very much advanced in technology. It seems to me that they love their roots, their tribe and their culture a lot that they want to be reminded of who they are and where they come from.

Wakanda is a very traditional country as throne is passed to the next blood in line but the country also keep a fair democracy system where anyone could disagree with the decision and could challenge the potential king. I think this is great as it provides a chance for others to prove their skill (though I can’t see how winning a win-or-die fight can show any leadership skill). But I like the open challenge concept. Sadly there’s still countries who are ruled by dictatorship (though some proclaimed themselves as democratic), where the citizens do not have the chance to challenge the government.

In order to protect their source of power, the people in Wakanda disregarded the Blacks at other part of the world, including other cities in Africa, as their people. Non-Wakanda were labeled as “others”. It’s seen in the current society where people judged and refused to help even our fellow brother or sister with the same skin colour/nationality because they wanted to protect their own interest and they do not view them as their allies. It’s sad actually.. that we are so selfish and we have the boundary between you and me.

Even though T’Challa is the King of Wakanda, he listens to his companions and he respects others. He struggled as he desired to change the tradition to reach out to other people outside Wakanda because of his council’s objection. His character is empathetic and humble. He teared for Killmonger when he knew about his tragedy. He forgave Killmonger and he was willing to give him another chance. Most importantly, he did not let the past dictate his future. He put down the burden of his father’s sin and attempt to solve the current problem. Thank goodness! If not the whole movie we’ll be seeing him whining and constantly blaming himself.

Another important point is they portrayed the motive of the villian in relevance to us. We understand Killmonger’s story and motive, and therefore, feel for him though he is the bad guy. There is no complete right or wrong in this world. The judgement of right or wrong is subjective in relative to your prospective. However, he was overruled by his emotion. Anger and frustration. His emotion led him to call for revenge, which will hurt more innocent people. Anyway, he was stopped but we all know that deep in his heart, he’s just a boy who still has love in him :’) — the scene before he died (T^T)

In conclusion, I enjoyed this movie and I think it’s a great call for the world to appreciate and embrace diversity and inclusion.

Programme Manager @ Padang & Co | Architectural Designer | Startups, Participatory Design and Social Enterprise sectors https://www.linkedin.com/in/llqingping/

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