150 years or so ago in American history, there was pure evil against humanity lurking in the south. My favorite movie last weekend,
… reminded me just how despicable these white slave owners were and how miserably black people were treated.
And yet there were heroes like Harriet Tubman who escaped slavery herself and returned to free more of her family, friends and others. If there is a Heaven beyond, Harriet Tubman better be receiving the penthouse suite.
Just came across this article from a critic who pointed out some funny (to her) parts in the movie and how she felt laughing in a room when nobody else laughed.
What I am saying is is that if you’re not laughing at someone’s plight or struggle, you can laugh with them. And I have to acknowledge what is true: As one of the few people of color, and as far as I could see, the only Black woman in that screening room, it may have been easier to for me to find the humor in a movie about slavery than a non-Black person, simply because I have lived in this skin my entire life.Harriet Tubman Movie Review: The Humorous Aspects of the Film
I simply could not laugh, much less smile, at the scene she’s mentioning. After all, thinking about an enslaved father so terrified that he would be whipped by his white slave owner if he “saw” his daughter doing something so he intentionally shrouded his eyes. This isn’t funny to me, an admittedly old white guy. I’ll forever be disturbed that human beings would ever do that to others. It touched me.
This is but one of many reasons why I love going to movies at the theater: for the additional social experience. Something I found very disturbing and sad another moviegoer found funny — and we’re both right for our emotions very, very different reasons.
This movie made me even more compassionate to the whole topic of slave reparations. I realize that all these years later nobody is alive that did this to people in history. In a sense, the guilty have already gone to meet their fate. Holding a future generation financially responsible for actions in the past is a difficult proposition. It’s a deep, sprawling topic that I don’t have enough education on the topic or energy to get into it in great depth at this blog, but I’m here to say after seeing this movie, I’m more open to the concept than I was before seeing it. I’m truly saddened that this time in history ever existed.
Oh, and definitely let’s put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill. If we can’t put a true superhero — forget the fictional MCU — like Harriet on a bill, we shouldn’t put any faces on there.
More Harriet Reviews
Let’s see what others are saying about Harriet. I normally separate negative and positive reviews, but in the spirit of equality, all are kept in one list. The numbering is there simply to identify the quantity of reviews, not in any specific order of importance or sorting.
There are some deeper discussions worth engaging in within the posts that are quoted. Enjoy!
- harveycritic: “Harriet Tubman must be grinning widely in her grave at Auburn, New York where she died in 1913, as this is a handsome movie that shows her in such a positive light that she appears to have not a single human flaw.”
- As a Matter of Fancy: “The reviews are so tepid because Tubman was a Christian; she prayed; God answered her prayers. America’s media mavens could hardly praise anything Christian, least of all a woman of color who took it seriously “
- Jeff Huston: “…. lays the melodrama on pretty thick, but the integrity of who she was – a gun wielding, God-guided slave emancipator – boldly remains.”
- lucidtheory: “The story is not as incomplete as it felt. It was only one part of her time line, the most famous and prominent one that we all learned about.”
- Jennifer P. Harris: “I saw Harriet Tubman not as just an ‘American legend’, but a damn superhero!”
- Lynn M’s Literary Corner: ” The plot was great. The music was great. The scenery was great. And to that point, when it was over, the theatre audience applauded. “
- Writergurlny: “This movie is brilliant and I believe, a must-see for anyone who believes in the freedoms that the United States is built on.”
- greatmartin: “…am glad I went to see “Harriet” because it made me more interested into getting her true story, if it is known, and the performance by Cynthia Erivo plus some very strong performances from supporting performers.”
- Jordan Woodson’s Reviews: “… an extremely powerful and inspirational film that is historically accurate and showcases an incredible lead actress that embodies the brave woman that risked her life for thousands “
- Movie Nation: “Tubman’s case to be on the $20 bill, as a heroine straight out of American myth, is made, a brave Christian woman sprinting down the path of the righteous. “Harriet” stumbles when it makes her more mythic than human, and less the woman of action than she was.”
- liammgaughan: “…while I can see it being a good educational tool it’s not really that substantial as a narrative. It’s a blandly shot film that seems to sanitize and simplify its issues, and despite Erivo’s great performance this does feel like a checklist of biopic cliches”
- Pan and Slam: “Harriet is worth seeing as an educational and thoroughly entertaining history lesson.”
- genelantz: “We think of the American Civil War not as a meaningless tragedy as it is usually portrayed, but as a giant leap forward for all of us. Those who agree are really going to like “Harriet.””
- steventhomas: “I think we can appreciate Harriet in the context of cinema history as so many young and amazing artists, writers, and directors, now more of them women of color than ever, are able to lend their artistic vision to how the past informs our movement into the future.”
- Jasonbleau: “It might not be Oscar worthy but it’s at least a decent at worst representation of Tubman and does enough to satisfy as a long-overdue cinematic tribute to one of the most iconic women in American history”
- Armrestrenegade: “Just go see it, would ya? White people, please try not to flog yourself for the egregious acts of slavery, ok? “
- B.A.W.N: “This big screen adaptation of the renowned icon, stands amongst the most celebrated freedom fighters of American history.”
- Anika’s Antics: “This is a dramatized (though not excessively) true to her own experience narrative about a woman that history should never, ever forget.”
- moviejolz: “For most of the time my eyes were glued to the screen; however, when the script went off into a religious fantasy mode it lost me a bit.”
- Brother Saye: “Overall, the cast did an excellent job of acting, and the costumes and geographical optics were excellent, but this is not a film we should turn to, when remembering the legacy of Harriet Tubman.”
- Jay / Assholes Watching Movies: “Harriet is not a slavery movie. Harriet is a freedom movie. It is a showcase for resilience, and hope. It’s also a reminder of the kind of impact one single person can have.”
- Feela Speaks: “It was something about the strength that was portrayed in [Harriet] that made me want to learn more ” (also, watch her embedded video, where she goes into controversy surrounding the actress who played Harriet — good stuff)
One thought on “21+ Harriet Reviews – A Real Superhero in a Horrible Time and Place in American History”
Thank you for your written words.
Although slavery supposedly ended many many what’s ago, this happened the year that I was born: https://www.al.com/news/2018/04/last_lynching_in_america_shock.html
So often we think slavery ended when the history books provide us with a date, but the reality is for many this is still something a film can never portray.
But the overall write up was great. Thanks again!