AboutHer’s Most Racist Movies of 2017 So Far
We’re more than halfway through 2017, but there’s already a handful of movies out of Hollywood that have come packed with a distinct and pungent odor of racism. While some of it can be unintentional due to a woeful ignorance, there are still others that made such a huge mistake in their writing and direction that are too terrible to ignore with their racist depictions. Here is AboutHer’s list of the five most racist movies of 2017 so far.
Transformers: The Last Knight
Michael Bay’s fifth Transformers film not only continues his limited and ignorant view of the world, but revives his past atrocities. If you’ll recall from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Bay offensively portrayed two robots as racist depictions of black people. He’s revived this type of character for a comeback in The Last Knight that comes off just as uncomfortable and odd as it ever has. It’s amazing how Bay’s Transformers series continues with the stereotypes for both the human and robot characters, as Anthony Hopkins plays an elderly Englishman that babbles in British-isms to the point of being incoherent. A Native American is referred to by Mark Wahlberg’s character as Chief.
When it comes to solving the mystery of a Chinese devil box, there’s thankfully a Chinese acquaintance to decipher it. And that Asian individual happens to be a kimono-wearing girl with her hair in a bun, residing in a spacious loft with a massive collection of the largest Chinese antiques you’ve ever seen. Oh, and she only works for dumplings which are apparently the nectar of the gods and a suitable exchange rate for translation services.
Though the modern day setting of The Mummy begins in Iraq, the only arabs you’ll see are the ones toting guns and firing at Tom Cruise. And that’s all you’ll see of them in this movie as the story shifts to England. While Algerian–French actor Sofia Boutella does star as the lead monster, she spends the entire movie in white makeup and with the most bland of villain dialogue. Seems like every arab in the world of The Mummy wants to kill you either with guns or supernatural powers.
David Brent: Life on the Road
Ricky Gervais’ character of David Brent from the office was always cringe-worthy, but even more now as a wanna-be rock star going on the road. Paired with a young black rapper, Brent makes all the ignorant and racist statements with that creepy smile and uneasy titter. Most of Brent’s music numbers focus on dated stereotypes of Native Americans and black people to an uncomfortable degree. The humor is based mostly on how Brent is so inept and insensitive about the world around him, but the consistent racial jabs really wear down the comedy of racial ignorance further than it should have gone.
Ghost in the Shell
Here is a film where the central villain’s plan involves whitewashing an Asian character. When a company does cybernetic testing on planting a human brain inside an entirely robotic body, they wipe the memory of Motoko Kusanagi and place her in the cybernetic vessel of a white woman. This is the film’s convoluted way of trying to get around the whitewashing controversy of casting Scarlett Johansson as the lead of Motoko, to say nothing of recasting other typically Japanese characters as white and black. Surprisingly, however, legendary Japanese actor Beat Takeshi does appear in one of the Japanese roles and speaks in Japanese, further showcasing what an all-Japanese Ghost in the Shell live-action could have been.