Spoilers for Sorry to Bother You ahead
The inevitable arrival of the 4th of July brings with it an equally inevitable insistence on celebrating the heroics of the great and noble men who brought this “great” country of ours to the forefront of international prominence. Every single year, a new line of impressionable youngsters is trained to believe in a group of heroes who could do no wrong as they brought down the greatest empire in the world and created a new nation in God’s image. This kind of hero worship is not only immoral, it’s one-sided. It convinces us that the Founding Fathers are worth remembering because they had no flaws of their own. In turn, this indoctrinates anyone who’s willing to listen into believing that the image they should aspire to in life is that of the white man.
But the cold, hard truth is that that’s not the America we know anymore. Today, we champion diversity and welcome viewpoints from all walks of life. The problem is that there are still plenty who think that American now is the same America of 1776, and, as such, are willing to ensure that it stays that way. Our current reality is one in which the so-called “American Dream,” the popular belief that ambition and a strong work ethic can and will pay off in droves for those who are willing to exercise both to the fullest extent, is still egregiously used to misdirect people into believing in a financial fantasy. Day by day, the ingrained myth that is American capitalism allows those with financial power to strip those who feed their success of any kind of voice or identity. Subservients are tasked with remaining cogs in a machine that benefits very few. So the question is, why should we celebrate the past this weekend when there’s so much wrong with the present that it has created? And with that in mind, I can’t think of a film that actively probes this question, and has more fun doing it, better than Sorry to Bother You
White Voice as Financial Success as White Supremacy
Boots Riley’s satirical denouncement of capitalism engages with the factors that allow it to thrive while also demonstrating how easily it’s able to quell the revolutionary movements intent on dismantling it. The film centers around Cassius “Cash” Green (