I initially learned about the movie through social media when there was a buzz about a movie called “The Hate You Give”. Coupled with the title, I became quite curious to see what this movie was all about. How can someone or something give you “hate”. One day a friend brought the DVD for me which she had purchased in United States of America (USA), she had watched it during her flight on the plane and felt that it was a must see.
The movie was released on the 5th of October 2018, directed by George Tilam Jr. The leading character, Starr Carter (American actress Amandla Stenberg) is an African American teenager and student who lives with her family in the “hood”. She and her brother Lamar are enrolled into a mostly white school in a white and more wealthy neighbourhood as an attempt by her parents to keep them safe from public schools which they felt was a ground for crime. She constantly has to switch between two worlds, the black and white neighbourhoods.
The film begins with Starr and her three siblings seated at dinner table getting “the talk” from their father about how to handle situations should they be pulled over by a white police officer. He helped Starr in a situation where she and her childhood friend Khalil were pulled over by a police officer upon returning from a party. Her world was turned upside down when she witnessed him get fatally shot at the hands of a white police man on that night.
Just before they got pulled over, Khalil plays a track by rapper Tupac, THUG LIFE, which according to Tupac means that what society gives to young people can come back later in life and make them act out in a negative way.
The female gives an excellent performance in this adaptation of a significant book by Angie Thomas. The young girl soon finds her voice when she speaks on television and testifies courageously to a grand jury, as well as when a protest breaks out in the community due to the police officer being pardoned by the law.
The director touches on a lot of issues that plague societies across the globe such as the violence, crime and abuse that takes place in the black community, white privilege mentality, racism, and the social injustice along colour lines.
Many may find the movie to be one sided in how it portrays the controversial issues pertaining to race but a balance is seen where Starr’s white boyfriend plays a supportive and loving role before and after the mayhem. So, would I recommend and watch this movie again? Definitely.