Right on! Right on the spot to more positive reviews of Shaka King’s Judas and the Black Messiah as the movie shake its viewers about the life of Fred Hampton. Fred Hampton is a modern day messiah of the black people for achieving equality, security and a better life as they exist among the whites. Like every hero with all his followers, he has a betrayer among their mists who eventually started and causes his downfall.
The film is one great highlight in the beginning of 2021 being a powerful historical drama that opens awareness this days about one significant life that was unfortunately short lived but its existence became an inspiration to many. “We can heal this whole city”, is just one of the powerful statements of Fred as he tries to convince another group to join them in their goal. I can say that he might not have seen the end result of such statement yet it is apparent that it became a good beginning to give empowerment.
I could not help to admire how the character of Fred Hampton in several scenes engaged his listeners to his speeches as he convinces them to support their group called Black Panther Party (BPP) through giving emphasis on the party’s goal that focuses on a promise of a better life to the black people. Daniel Kaluuya did an amazing job in portraying Fred’s character who exudes the aura of a true born leader in the film. The life of Fred just showed the world its unfairness most especially when the sense of justice is no longer enforced by the law and rather claimed by the people who only thinks about their selfish beliefs on how justice must be served.
This might not always be true but it definitely became the case to the late leader of the Black Panther Party (BPP). As much as there is the modern day messiah, there is also the modern day version of the infamous Judas in the person of William O’neil played by LaKeith Stanfield who have successfully helped the FBI to infiltrate the BPP by being one of them while he passed on some information to the FBI. His guilt and doubt to what he does became evident in the later part of the movie however this did not stop him to keep accepting money from the FBI special agent Roy Mitchell played by Jesse Plemons.
Here are the top critics of the film Judas and the Black Messiah:
“ Both of the main stars are significantly older than their characters, since Hampton died at the age of 21. That’s a forgivable bit of license, given the intensity and magnetism that Kaluuya brings to the secondary role.” Bryan Lowry-CNN.com
“Judas and the Black Messiah can’t do everything. What it accomplishes is nevertheless quite something. It is a bittersweet compliment to what’s here that we end the film wishing it’d done even more.” K. Austin Collins-Rolling Stone
“Through King’s masterful storytelling and Kaluuya’s and Stanfield’s stunning performances, viewers learn why the Black Panther Party… was subject to the most aggressive targeting by the FBI.” Elizabeth Hinton-The Atlantic
“It’s a balance reflective of King’s film overall. “Judas and the Black Messiah,” resurrecting a painful saga of police racial injustice, is a self-evidently timely film without stating its contemporary resonance literally.” Jake Coyle-Associated Press
Judas and the Black Messiah indeed made 2021 a promising year to look forward for more in the film industry. Dig in!