Movie review: The Hate U Give gives powerful message

Naomi Ludlow | Arts & Entertainment Editor

The movie The Hate U Give is more than a story about another innocent victim of police brutality but the importance of peace and knowledge.

Starr Carter (Amandla Stenberg) is the main character and witnesses the killing of her childhood friend, Khalil. She spent her life playing two versions of herself and never letting them get mixed up.

She grew up in a poor, predominantly black community called Garden Heights which is infested with gangs, violence and drugs. But she attended a private school filled with mostly whites who didn’t understand the struggles of the black community.

Starr battled with finding her voice in this situation for fear of being ridiculed. She never wanted her two lifestyles to merge and refused to be another stereotype.

The impact of this film seems bigger than its fictional characters but represents the story of individuals who have fallen victim to police brutality.  this movie, a viewer might think of the story of Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Eric Garner and countless others. The striving for justice and having your voice heard was apparent.

The Carter children were raised to stand up for what they believe in and always protect themselves and one another. Their father was adamant in showing them the truths of being black in this world.

“The family dynamic was structured, and they had to be prepared for what society truly is,” Hampton University junior marketing major Jeremy Crenshaw said. “There was black-on-black and police-on-black crimes, so that really gave them nowhere to go in the community that they lived in. The father was trying to break the cycle by … setting them up to be better than he was.”

Earlier on, there is a reference to Tupac Shakur and his take on hate. Hate is present in all communities and is passed along through generations. Hate is only stopped when someone realizes there is a cycle going on and takes action.

This movie was powerful beyond measure because it was so descriptive and relatable. This movie was inspired by the book written by Angie Thomas. Although there were not in-depth explanations of the events that happened in this movie, the viewer still sees the character development.

The growth of Starr and the relationships she has are witnessed. The characters were well thought out. The author and director worked closely to make sure the movie strongly resembled the book.

The focus is to start a conversation with young adults. Teenagers are going through these things and need to know how to handle these situations.

“It’s an ideal movie to see with teens – nothing is too cringe-worthy for parents to handle while sitting next to their kids – and then talk about candidly afterward,” a Common Sense Media review said.

The Hate U Give is supposed to spark conversation and provoke action. The younger generations have to understand the reality of this society and what to do in response. This movie and book are a must see and read. Their powerful messages will drive change in all communities.

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