Custom Search





I Am Not Your Negro


March 2, 2017

I Am Not Your Negro (*** ½)

The struggles of African Americans in a country that prides itself in being the land of the free forms the basis of director Raoul Peck’s incendiary documentary, I Am Not Your Negro. Based on a proposed book project by the celebrated writer, James Baldwin, that would have told the history of race through the eyes of Dr. Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and Medger Evers, Peck’s film connects the dots from the early struggles of civil rights up to the current Black Lives Matter movement. It’s an astonishing achievement that offers no easy answers but much food for thought in the interim.

Peck’s choice as to how to tell his story is quite unique. In giving audiences a history of our country’s troubled relationship with race, Peck has chosen to use the film as a way to finish the book that Baldwin never got around to completing.

I Am Not Your Negro based on James Baldwin’s work (center)

He simply envisions the project that Baldwin had in mind and, using excellently chosen archival footage, weaves together a tapestry on film that’s certainly disturbing but also very illuminating. At the screening I attended several audience members winced at various times during the film. That’s the kind of effect that the film has on you regardless of your frame of mind going into it.

Throughout the film we see lots of footage of the real James Baldwin, lecturing, debating and sometimes just commenting on the way he sees things. Samuel L. Jackson provides the voiceover narration for passages from Baldwin’s writings that serve as the underpinning for the provoking imagery onscreen.

At times, I Am Not Your Negro is an undeniably depressing experience in spite of Peck’s undeniable gifts as a documentary filmmaker. It pulls no punches and demands your attention. It offers no easy answers but then again the best documentary films rarely do, offering instead to show things simply as they exist. This is that kind of film.

Logan (** ½)

It’s old news by now that Hollywood studios are not renowned for taking chances. If something works they tend to bludgeon an idea to death until it dies from overexposure or, worse, audience indifference. With the runaway success of the first R rated comic book adaptation, Deadpool, early last year, it should come as no surprise that Fox, the studio behind that property, would try it again. Logan, which is both a new addition to the X Men film universe and also another chapter in the continuing series of adventures featuring the series’ standalone character, Wolverine, has also been given the R rating. And, I think it’s wise to note, that this film earns its R rating in spades. There’s a generous heaping of four letters words, particularly a frequent dropping of the F-bomb, and enough violence to satiate those who are curious to see what an R rated Wolverine film might look like. And that may be alone to satisfy those clamoring what has been billed as the final installment in the travails of the Wolverine character.

Taken on its own terms as a film, Logan will be more problematic for those who are not as invested in the X Men universe or comic book movie adaptations in general.

Patrick Stewart & Hugh Jackman in Logan

Those more schooled in these things will certainly love it. There’s obviously nothing anyone can say, myself included, that will dampen the geeky charms of the films for those who have been clamoring for its release. Heck, the sights and sounds of Professor X (the 77 year old Patrick Stewart) bandying about the F word will be enough to send long time fans into fits of chuckles and into geek heaven. For the rest of us, what we’re left with is a passable Wolverine adventure, roughly on a par with the last one in the franchise.

Logan’s plot is basically a road movie of sorts, a classic cinematic template that seems to always work when all other storytelling options have been exhausted. Here Logan/Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) is passing the days away under the influence of alcohol as the film opens and sometimes taking care of Professor X, who’s been suffering crippling seizures. When he’s sober enough, Logan takes work as a driver for hire. He is approached by a mysterious woman and entrusted with the task of getting the woman’s daughter to safety, said child being cursed/blessed with abilities similar to Logan’s. Along the way, and with Professor X in tow, Logan must fend off those who are looking to kidnap the child for nefarious purposes.

The best thing about Logan is its connection to real people and real problems that most mortals deal with, as evidenced by his decision to care for the again Professor X, among other things. This type of thing is what makes Logan as relatively enjoyable as it is even if the film ultimately proves to be a mixed bag.

Questions or comments? Write Adam at



Get Out & The Red Turtle

A Cure For Wellness & Fifty Shades Darker

Rings & John Wick: Chapter 2


Split • The Founder

Silence • Patriots Day

A Monster Calls & Hidden Figures

Paterson & 20th Century Women


Fences • Sing • Rogue One

Nocturnal Animals • La La Land & Collateral Beauty

Why Him?

Manchester By The Sea Allied • Loving

Rules Don’t Apply • Moana & Bad Santa 2

Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them • Moonlight

Arrival & Dr. Strange

Hacksaw Ridge

Inferno & Ouija: Origin Of Evil

Jack Reacher: Never Go Back

The Girl On The Train & The Accountant

Masterminds • Deep Water Horizon • Birth Of A Nation

Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children

Snowden & The Magnificent Seven

Bridget Jones’ Baby & Blair Witch


The Light Between Oceans

Hell Or High Water & Don't Breathe

Sausage Party & Indignation

Florence Foster Jenkins & Pete's Dragon • Café Society

Eat That Question & Suicide Squad

Star Trek Beyond & Jason Bourne

Lights Out


The Purge: Election Year

Independence Day: Resurgence • The BFG

Free State Of Jones & DePalma

Now You See Me 2 & Finding Dory

The Conjuring 2 & Me Before You

X Men: Apocalypse Love And Friendship

The Lobster & The Meddler

Money Monster • The Nice Guys Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising

Miles Ahead

Elvis And Nixon Green Room

Midnight Special Everybody Wants Some

The Jungle Book

I Saw The Light • The Boss

Hello My Name Is Doris & Krisha

Divergent: Allegiant & Batman v Superman

10 Cloverfield Lane & Brothers Grimsby

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot & London Has Fallen

Triple 9 & 45 Years

Eddie The Eagle• The Witch

Where To Invade Next & Son Of Saul

Deadpool • The Choice • How To Be Single

Hail Caesar & Fifty Shades Of Black

The Finest Hours & The 5th Wave

Mustang & The Lady In The Van

Anomalisa • 13 Hours: The & Secret Soldiers Of Benghazi

The Revenant • Youth

Carol • Joy • The Hateful Eight

Star Wars: The Force Awakens • The Big Short • Concussion

Daddy’s Home • Alvin & The Chipmunks: The Road Chip

In The Heart Of The Sea • Krampus

Creed • Brooklyn


‘Mockingjay Part 2’ • All Things Must Pass • The Night Before


Spectre & The Peanuts Movie

Steve Jobs & Our Brand Is Crisis

Crimson Peak & Room

Bridge Of Spies & Goosebumps

99 Homes

The Martian • Sicario & The Walk

The Intern • The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials • Everest

The Visit & Black Mass

Mistress America

The Diary Of A Teenage Girl A Walk In The Woods

American Ultra • No Escape • Sinister 2

Straight Outta Compton, The End Of The Tour, The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Irrational Man & Fantastic Four

Ricki And The Flash & The Gift

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation • Southpaw • Vacation

Ant-Man & Trainwreck


Amy • Magic Mike XXL, Terminator: Genisys

Me & Earl & The Dying Girl, Ted 2

Inside Out & Dope

Love and Mercy & Jurassic World

Insidious Chapter 3

San Andreas & Aloha

Poltergeist &

Mad Max: Fury Road

Hot Pursuit

Avengers: Age Of Ultron

Ex Machina

While We’re Young & Unfriended

The Longest Ride

Fast & Furious 7

It Follows




Focus & The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Hot Tub Time Machine 2

Fifty Shades Of Grey

Jupiter Ascending

Still Alice

The Imitation Game A Most Violent Year

American Sniper Inherent Vice

Selma & Taken 3


Big Eyes • The Interview

Night At The Museum The Secret of the Tomb • The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Top Five • Wild • Annie


Whiplash & The Theory Of Everything

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 • Horrible Bosses 2

Dumb And Dumber To

Birdman & Interstellar




The Judge

Annabelle & Gone Girl

The Equalizer & Happy 75th, GWTW!

The Drop • A Walk Among & The Tombstones

No Good Deed

The Identical

As Above, So Below & November Man

If I Stay & Sin City: A Dame To Kill For

The Giver • Code Black & The Expendables 3

Boyhood • Into The Storm & Magic In The Moonlight

Get On Up & Guardians Of The Galaxy


Begin Again & The Purge: Anarchy

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes

Chef & Tammy

Transformers: Age Of Extinction

Jersey Boys

22 Jump Street & How To Train Your Dragon 2

The Fault Is In Our Stars & Edge Of Tomorrow

A Million Ways To Die In The West

X-Men: Days Of Future Past Maleficent

Godzilla • Summer Preview

Neighbors • Godzilla

The Amazing Spiderman 2 & Belle

The Other Woman & Brick Mansions

A Haunted House 2 & Heaven Is For Real

Oculus & Rio 2

Captain America: The Winter Soldier



The Grand Budapest Hotel & Veronica Mars

300: Rise of the Empire

Non-Stop & Son Of God

Three Days To Kill

Robocop & The Past • About Last Night

The Monuments Men

Labor Day

I, Frankenstein

Inside Llewyn Davis & Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Lone Survivor & August: Osage County

Her • Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom & The Wolf Of Wall Street

The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, Saving Mr. Banks, American Hustle, Anchorman 2

The Hobbit: The Desolation & Of Smaug • Nebraska

Dallas Buyers Club & Oldboy & Out Of The Furnace

Philomena & The Book Thief

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire & Delivery Man

About Time & All Is Lost

Thor: The Dark World & 12 Years A Slave

Ender’s Game & Last Vegas

Bad Grandpa &The Counselor

Carrie & The Fifth Estate

Captain Phillips, Enough Said & Machete Kills

Gravity & Runner Runner

Metallica: Through The Never , Rush & Don Jon

Prisoners & Rush

Insidious: Chapter 2 • The Family & The Spectacular Now



The World’s End You’re Next

Lee Daniels’ The Butler • Jobs • Blue Jasmine

Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters & Elysium

2 Guns

Blue Jasmine • The Wolverine & Fruitvale Station

Fruitvale Station • The Conjuring & The Way Way Back

Pacific Rim & Grown Ups 2

The Lone Ranger & Despicable Me 2

The Heat & White House Down

Monsters University, World War Z, Before Midnight & The East

Man of Steel & This Is The End

The Internship & The Purge

After Earth, Now You See Me & Frances Ha

The Hangover Part III Before Midnight

Star Trek: Into Darkness & Fast and Furious 6

The Great Gatsby & Frances Ha

Iron Man & Peeples

Pain and Gain & Mud

Oblivion & Lords of Salem

42 and Scary Movie 5

Evil Dead & Jurassic Park 3-D

G.I. Joe: Retaliation Tyler Perry’s Temptation

Spring Breakers Admission

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone • The Call

Oz: The Great And Powerful West Of Memphis

Jack the Giant Slayer The Last Exorcism, Part II

Dark Skies & Snitch

A Good Day to Die Hard & Safe Haven

Side Effects & Identity Thief

Bullet To The Head Warm Bodies




BannerEventAd-01.jpg   BannerEventAd-01.jpg

PO Box 1721 | Hickory, NC 28603 | 828.322.1036 | Office Hours: Mon. - Fri. 9am - 5pm |

Home • Reviews: MoviesAdam Long • Editorials: FocusHave Chainsaw Will TravelSid On SportsBobbi GSara MawyerPeople PicturesPlaces/PeopleExtra Events Listing
Out Of Focus • News: Local NewsNational NewsHoroscopes • Info/Links: Staff/ContributorsList Of AdvertisersOnline AdvertisingOnline ClassifiedsContact UsFocus BLOGStoreLinks

© 1978 - 2018 Tucker Productions, Inc.