Written by [(i’zek)]
As the sun is resting firmly on the horizon, two kings overlook the landscape of the kingdom with opposing and polarizing perspectives.
One King declares that he would rather fight and die than be in bondage.
The other decides that he would rather live and fight for freedom.
The decisions of the two royal entities are solidified after a series of intense trials and triumphs as they wrestled with self-identification.
One might notice that amidst the beautiful cinematography and the brilliant acting, the film is both introspective and reflective. As the scenes progress, you are faced with a question that resonates throughout the film.
Who are you?
Not so much in name rank and serial, but who are you in regards to your moral integrity, your value system, your spirituality, and your consciousness.
Each character serves as an avatar for the various types of black people throughout the African Diaspora and the question of identity is a large part of each character’s journey. Each main and supporting character begins with an established concept of self that is challenged and evolves as obstacles and conflict arise.
“Who are you?” Is a reoccurring theme in the film shows a great level of social concern and responsibility from writer and director Ryan Coogler. A concern and responsibility that is passed down to the audience as we determine whether we want to struggle with the confines of our past or if we want to redefine our future.
Throughout the film you may find yourself searching for which character you identify with. Are you the loyalist that is down for the cause even if that means that you will sacrifice your lover? Are you the lost soul haunted by the events of your past? Are you the leader that is accountable for your loved ones and torn between right and wrong?Are you the traditionalist that believes in sustaining and protecting culture at all cost?
When the credits end and the theaters are empty we are still face to face with the only question that matters. Who are you? The only difference is our journey isn’t pre-scripted. We now get to actively participate in writing the rest of our story. We are left with the opportunity to define ourselves. You get to answer, “Who are you?”