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500 Years Later: Critical Documentary Review

  • Date Submitted: 06/30/2012 11:57 AM
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Ruethairat Trakulchang
Professor Ratcliff
19 February 2012
500 Years Later: Critical Documentary Review

      500 years later is a film that explores the struggles that Africans are going through in an effort to attain basic freedom. Owen Alik Shahadah is the creative, pragmatic, and thorough film maker of this film. The film was created in 2005 in five continents and it runs for 1 hour 48 minutes. Production was made in the Codeblack TV studio (Shahadah 2005). Shahadah’s work is impressive since he addresses a very sensitive issue that is rarely discussed. Disparity and injustice are two aspects that come out in the film. These vices are happening in our societies and there is no way that they can be overlooked.
      The viewers’ attention is captured through the presentation of the disparities that are there between the black and the white people. White people are still seen as superior beings and black people continue to suffer in mystery. 500 years on, Africans have not yet gained their rightful place in the global society. Africans are aware of their oppression but they continue to suffer in silence. The film challenges the viewers’ perception about the world we live in, sovereignty is yet to be attained for black people. The idea of freedom is given a new meaning; to be free means to appreciate own culture and be in a position to make practical decisions without interference.
      The scenes that bring out the disparities between the white and black communities add to the zest of the film. They support the theme of the film. The disparities are very evident that it is impossible to ignore them. The scenes where black people express their views on the oppression are also noteworthy. They express it with such pain and disgust that it challenges the viewers’ emotions.   However, the scenes where black people smile while giving their points of view does not add to the overall quality. The film seeks...


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