‘Selma’ pleases audiences everywhere

by Danny Bush One can’t help but feel personally involved with the peaceful protests led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. while watching “Selma.” Based in Selma, Ala., this reiteration of the protests for unencumbered voting right for black citizens puts the audience in the shoes of protesters and police alike.
King, portrayed by David Oyelowo, gives a call to both whites and blacks which begs the question: “How would I respond?”
As history dictates, this film is set after Dr. King receives a Nobel Peace Prize. He and fellow members of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference gather in the small town of Selma, seeing it as the ideal stage for a peaceful march.
King acts as liaison to the White House and we, as the audience, are treated to many less talked-about parts of the history of segregation.
Several characters are developed in this involved dramatization of a big step in King’s life.
Most notably, we are let into the more personal aspects of King’s life.
Though I’ve never heard King speak in the private intimacy of his home, I felt as if King himself starred in his own movie. Oyelowo’s dictation of King’s speeches and the way he spoke in person was excellently performed.
I couldn’t help but feel personally involved with Dr. King as he fought racism with peace and hate with patience.
I also couldn’t help but harbor negative emotions toward King Jr. as the retelling revealed secrets of his personal life—some of which were surprising and disappointing.
Ultimately, the greatness of this man is measured by how many opposed him. In “Selma,” it seems that everyone is out to ruin King in some way or another.
Perhaps the most stunning and engaging parts of the film were the accurate depictions of the marches themselves.
I found myself white-knuckled as I watched peaceful black and white protesters senselessly beaten by ruthless enforcers of the law.
I wanted to go back and answer the call myself. I wanted to be there for King and his followers.
And, by golly, I wanted to take a beating in the name of equality.
Though this film has been showing since early January, there is still time to celebrate the life of Martin Luther King Jr. and to celebrate Black History Month.

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