July 25th, 1967. A date in which the city of Detroit will want to forget. A time of disaster and misjudged shootings with racially charged riots, something bad was bound to happen. The fact we used to live like this, not just in Detroit but all around the world, where racism was acceptable, judging people by the colour of their skin was something which every citizen did day-to-day was normal, is mad. It still happens to day but it’s safe to say, it no longer looks like this anymore.
Detroit is Kathryn Bigelow’s latest blockbuster to hit our cinemas. She tells the true story of the chaotic riots that happened in Detroit in 1967. Algiers Motel was the scene of the crime where three young black men were murdered in cold blood due to police brutality. In a period of time where racism was accepted, does the crime get solved correctly? or does it leave a sour taste in everyone’s mouths?
Kathryn Bigelow tells the story in a remarkable way. She brings you into it, showing the brief history of that time before leading us to the main event. With her previous notable films such as The Hurt Locker and Dark Zero Thirty, she’s pulled it off again with Detroit. The use of found footage and how it was intertwined throughout made the film more authentic, gave the film more truth. Being two and a half hours long, you would probably think that’s pretty long, however, you find yourself viewing the film with high intensity, not being able to take your eyes off of this horrendous massacre. The feelings you get towards the film are overwhelming. I felt utterly speechless but angry that something like this had happened. I personally don’t think I’ve ever felt this way towards a crime drama before but I left feeling tense, frustrated and annoyed. That’s all down to Kathryn Bigelow’s direction.
All credit cannot go to her though, there were many stars to her shockingly intense show. John Boyega (Dismukes) is the middle-man, being black and a security guard, you think he should have done more throughout, but he couldn’t because of the race supremacy. Orchestrating the story was the most important to get right, and having his character appear the least throughout made you more frustrated as a viewer, but that’s what telling the truth does. Will Poulter (Krauss) is the man that will leave a poor taste in your mouth. His innocent look may be something he is known for, like in his previous film We’re the Millers but he has turned to the dark side, becoming disgusting and fearsome. You feel so much hatred towards him and his actions, not only him but the police force and how they could perform such acts, all because these people were of a different race. All performances throughout are award-winning, I know that’s high praise but you will understand what I mean.
I entered the cinema with open arms and relaxed posture but I left with clenched fists and tensed-up shoulders. I thoroughly enjoyed watching this film but the way it made me feel is very different compared to other films. Discovering that the story and premise to this film were true is what made me truly angry. Of course, I cannot spoil the ending but you wish for the best, but you end up receiving the worst possible result. There is no such thing as a happy ending but that doesn’t mean this film is not worth watching.