‘The Hate U Give’ illuminates effects of police brutality


Screenshot by Julissa Rangel

Outspoken activist Amandla Stenberg stars in the film adaptation of Angie Thomas’ 2017 fiction novel “The Hate U Give,” in theaters Oct. 19.

Cassia Ramelb

Reflecting today’s police brutality, “The Hate U Give” explores society’s social role in the stereotypical perpetuation of black victims.

Out in theaters Oct. 19, Angie Thomas’ 2017 best-selling young adult novel stirs up controversial opinions regarding gang life.

The 133-minute film offers no apologies for its balance of a dramatic coming-of-age storyline while previewing a mix of romantic comedy scenes with a bold culture-clash.

Starr Carter, portrayed by “Everything, Everything” star Amandla Stenberg, is divided into two worlds separating her black culture in Garden Heights with her dominantly white school life.

Screenwriter Audrey Wells and director George Tillman Jr. feature well-known cast like K.J. Apa, Sabrina Carpenter, Regina Hall, HBO’s “Insecure” star Issa Rae, rapper and actor Common and Anthony Mackie.

Carter reunites with her childhood friend Khalil (Algee Smith) as shots fire up a house party. On the car ride home, in the passenger seat of Khalil’s car, a police officer pulls them over, leading to Khalil’s death on the officer’s shoulders.

Thomas mirrors real-life teens shot and killed by police such as Laquan McDonald, Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown.

Carter displays her impactful decisions following the death of Khalil, who was shot by an officer. Nevertheless, Carter must balance her urge to prove Khalil is not a gang-banger and to dismiss the faulty negative opinions with the desire to not unveil her home life.

“If you don’t see my blackness, you don’t see me,” Carter said.

Evident bias media perspectives of Khalil’s case are a recurring motif showcased throughout the story. The film specifically draws attention toward the media’s influence on public opinion when it involves a black victim versus a white shooter. The media shapes a narrative placing Khalil as a gang-affiliated criminal who in theory “deserved to be shot.”

“The Hate U Give” fearlessly tackles an out-of-the-box impressive point of view which no other film has done before.

The film is rated PG-13 and is currently in select theaters but opens in wider release on Oct. 19.