This will be a short entry for me, but I do have a few lingering comments.
First, why was Amistad not as big of a deal as Van Buren etc. thought it would be at the time? I don’t understand how it didn’t affect the abolitionist movement at all. I also am frustrated that such an all star cast and director didn’t receive the credit they deserve for creating such a powerful film. Why is it that so few people know what Amistad was, and why didn’t more people see the film?
Two things really bothered me in the film – First, Morgan Freeman’s character, Joadson (spelling?) is completely made up. Why not use the REAL black man involved in the TRUE story as a character in the film? If everyone else is based on someone real, why fabricate such a character? It seems out of place and honestly misleading to the historical side of things. Second, I felt that some parts were a bit hokey (as I said in class) regarding the language barrier between the Mende and the Americans. When Baldwin and Cinque are talking about “where he’s from” it is painfully scripted. “How can I ask you where you’re from?” “How can I tell you where I’m from?” etc. These hokey parts really take away from the power and passion from the other parts for me, though I do see a need for some comedic relief (sort of).
I felt that in this movie, the problems we found and my personal annoyances were minuscule compared to the other films that we have watched and picked apart. Amistad does stay true to the story for the most part. I really enjoyed this film too.