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Why Netflix’s American Son Is Now More Important Than Ever

A scene taken from American Son
Credit: Netflix

The 2019 movie adaption of the Broadway show is a must a watch. The reviews of the film are not the best, but its message is one that is vital. 2020 is a year many of us would like to forget completely. The pandemic has halted life for months, responsible for 1000s of tragic passings. It seems the coronavirus has distracted us from a problem that has been ongoing, with the recent riots reminding us that life isn’t so great for everyone. American Son is a movie you need to watch to understand that Black Lives Matter…

Netflix released American Son only last year, but it seems the film has been slightly under the radar. The play-adaption focuses on Kendra, a woman who tries to understand what has happened to her teenage son Jamal as he goes missing. Played by Kerry Washington, the mother becomes frustrated with the police force as she has been kept in the dark. American Son attempts to depict different roles and viewpoints, as Jamal is never shown in the movie. This is to create an idea in your own mind of Kendra’s mixed-race son. If you want to understand the importance of this movie, be warned that spoilers are ahead…

Watch American Son to educate yourself.

With a number of flashbacks with little dialogue, it’s down to the viewer to piece together the events that has caused Kendra’s distress, alongside why Jamal has been entangled with the police force. Written by Christopher Demos-Brown, American Son pokes at the stereotypes of race that lives in today’s society. While many of us will never understand racism, it’s necessary for us to know that others suffer with it daily. As Jamal is never shown throughout the film, it forces viewers to instead imagine themselves in the story. How would we feel if it was our son or a family member pulled over and in turn killed? Should we all sit back and watch racism continue to unfold, leading to unnecessary deaths?

American Son’s tragic story is based on events that happen in America on a regular occurrence, and it’s time to change that. After reading the reviews of the film, what is notable is the difficulty many find putting themselves in someone else’s shoes. Throughout American Son, Kendra becomes incredibly frustrated. Losing a son due to the color of his skin is something no mother should have to go through. This should not be happening.

This needs to end.

There are many points to be made about American Son, but we want you to watch the Netflix movie yourself to empathize with the current situation occurring. We cannot watch this happening any longer.

To sign the ‘Justice for George Floyd’ petition, click here.