Tuesday, January 10, 2006


Of all the movies that we have studied so far Seven is the only one that does not have any racism. Not one racist remark/reference or any acts of discrimination was directed towards Morgan Freeman's character William Somerset. If you compare In the Heat of the Night to Seven, it's shocking that in only 40 years how politically correct filmmakers have become. Even in 48 Hours & Beverly Hills Cop, both of which were made in the mid-1980's, touched upon the racism issue. For example, in 48 Hours there were very racist remarks made by Nick Nolte's character. Nolte, at different points in the movie, calls Eddie Murphy's character racially charged names such as watermellon, spear chucker, and even nigger. Seven was made about 10 years later, and when you analyze it, you won't even find subtle racism.
Despite the topic of racism, I did notice a connection between Sidney Portier's character Virgil Tibbs and Freeman's Will Somerset. Both characters are portrayed as intelligent, arrogant, stubborn, homicide detectives who are the best in their department. Though Virgil Tibbs character is a bit more subdued, both character's inputs constantly conflict with the view of their white side kicks. In In the Heat of the Night, Bill Gillespie constantly looks for the easy answer by throwing a whole bunch of innocent people in jail despite the amount of evidence that Tibbs continually uncovers. Similarily, Somerset's intellectual analisys of the serial killer actions are constantly conflicting with Mills' simple reasoning that the actions of the serial killer were just psychotic. In both movies, the intellectual approach turn out to be correct in comparison to their white sidekicks.


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