If I had been asked a week ago what movie last made me cry, I would have said Schindler's List. On second thought it was The Hours which was so depressing it could make anyone cry. But I'm talking about one whose purpose is not to make me cry but to make me think. Usually, this is a movie based on truth.
This past Wednesday, the 15th, that movie was Lee Daniel's The Butler. (So named because someone owns the rights to The Butler, a short released in 1916! Could NOT name it just The Butler. Hollywood and copyright laws!)
Anyway, the story touched me at my core. I do not like anyone being disrespected, especially when it is for no good reason. White America's past treatment of Black Americans is a shame. There is a scene at a lunch counter where respectful but determined young black people are horribly abused just because they want to be served in the 'white' section of the counter. The courage of these people, like the others who did the same thing, is inspiring. Why should any group of people HAVE to fight for their right to be respected? Because nothing will change until someone says, "This is wrong. We won't stand for this treatment anymore."
I cried for the injustice of the past, for the pains of the people involved, for the hurt so many contributed to.
While this movie was overlooked in the Oscar race, I believe this is one movie I can recommend to everyone as a moving piece of history. Fine performances all around. Go see it.