Anthony's Film Review

Crash (2004)

A moving film about race relations and the human spirit that holds nothing back...

Los Angeles, and any other part of America, tries to be a melting pot. For example, you have a racist white cop, his not-so-racist partner, two young black guys with guns, a married white couple, an Iranian family, a Latino man with his wife and daughter, an Asian man who gets hit by a car, a married black couple, a black detective, a detective of Latin descent, and a few others. OK, it's not really a melting pot, but more like a tossed salad where the individual parts are still distinct and unwilling to mix with each other. Until, that is, they crash into one another like cars, of which a similar thing happens in the movie and works well as a symbol for the film.

You have the white couple getting carjacked by the two black guys. You have the Iranian father buying a gun and dealing with racist remarks by the gun seller. You have the black couple harassed by the racist cop while his partner watches in discomfort. You have the Latino locksmith fixing the Iranian man's store lock. In the beginning of the film, you see such collisions of characters and lives, and you also see racial stereotypes that are honestly portrayed without hesitation. The gun store owner, for example, calls the Iranian man "Osama" after the infamous terrorist. Sandra Bullock thinks the Latino blacksmith is in a gang because of his shaved head and tattoo. And what's just as great is that, eventually, the stereotypes are corrected in later dialogue.

The multiple plot lines intersect in all sorts of interesting ways. Everyone is linked together, not by a single linear chain but by an intricate web. In the process, we get to see more of who these people really are underneath our assumptions based on their color. Some of these characters redeem themselves while others may suffer terrible fates. In the end, most of the characters will find peace and happiness. If there is one thing that makes us all the same, it's that we all seek some sort of meaning in our lives. That's the message behind Crash.

Crash is not a movie that focuses on one particular set of characters or plot line. Each character and story is told equally throughout the film. Rather, the focus of Crash is the single societal issue of race. Racism and racial prejudice comes in many forms and situations, and the film attempts to capture a good sample of what people may have to deal with. The characters are just there as a means to make us think about ourselves and how we look at the world around us. And not surprisingly, a movie like this also tries to teach us valuable lessons. We should put aside our differences because it doesn't do any good for anyone. We all want to live happy lives. We all should embrace each other and share that passion.

I enjoyed the film for making me take a good look at myself. I also like the script and performances by everyone, especially Matt Dillon and Ludacris. A film like this one that deals with the most serious subject matter is sometimes one that people may be afraid to take part in. I consider it brave for Sandra Bullock, Brendan Fraser, Don Cheadle, and the rest of the cast to be in this movie. It's great for them to play characters who are all part of the same problem. When we take a good look at what we are doing to ourselves and others, good things can happen.

Anthony's Rating:

For more information about Crash, visit the Internet Movie Database.


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