When a film has so many white elephants in it – racism, homophobia, class wars and interracial relationships – it can be hard to see the funny side of things.
The directorial debut of Justin Simien, Dear White People, is a satire of all these things yet challenges the racial politics of American Colleges.
Set at Winchester University, the film focuses on four very different black students and how they identify themselves in white male dominated college.
The title of the film comes from a subversive campus radio show hosted by student DJ Sam White (Tessa Thompson.) ‘Dear white people’ is her catchphrase as she provokes her white listeners.
While this strong woman appears to know her role as the almost Malcolm X figure of the story, it is aspiring journalist Lionel Higgins (Tyler James Higgins), who unravels the story.
Being outcast by the affluent pack of males who run humour magazine Pastiche for being a gay black male, Higgins feels he doesn’t fit in any community.
It is his ability to just slip in unnoticed which tells the two sides of the tale, Sam’s push for change, and college residents son Kurt Fletcher’s (Kyle Gallner) plan to provoke.
Some of the issues may come across a little tongue in cheek, but within those humorous moments a message which is as prevalent as it has ever been is put across, and the fact it still needs to be reiterated in 2015 is a concern.
JUST AN INSIGHT SCORE: 8/10