13TH [Netflix]

My daughter Katie suggested that we watch a movie each week so we could talk about it when we Facebook PORTAL each Sunday. Since Katie came up with the idea, we decided she should make the first choice. Katie selected a Netflix documentary, 13TH (2016).

Director Ava Duvernay’s documentary explores the affects of the 13th Amendment to the Constitution on American society. Diane and I were shocked by the political strategy that used the 13th Amendment to cause mass incarceration of African-Americans to produce, in effect, slave labor.

Duvernay tells this story through a mixture of video news footage and commentary. Here’s the list of participants:

Angela DavisHerself – Interviewee
Baz DreisingerHerself – Interviewee
Bryan StevensonHimself
Cory BookerHimself – Interviewee
Cory GreeneHimself – Interviewee
Craig DeRocheHimself – Interviewee
Dan RatherHimself
David DinkinsHimself – Interviewee
David KeeneHimself
Dolores CanalesHerself – Interviewee
Gina ClaytonHerself – Interviewee
Glenn E. MartinHimself – Interviewee
Harry ReasonerHimself
Henry Louis GatesHimself – Interviewee
James KilgoreHimself
Jelani CobbHimself – Interviewee
John HaganHimself
Kevin GannonHimself – Interviewee
Lisa GravesHerself – Interviewee
Lyndon B. JohnsonHimself
Malkia CyrilHerself – Interviewee
Marie GottschalkHerself – Interviewee
Melina AbdullahHerself – Interviewee
Michael HoughHimself
Michelle AlexanderHerself – Interviewee
Newt GingrichHimself – Interviewee
Nicholas TurnerHimself
Peter JenningsHimself
Van JonesHimself – Interviewee
Walter CronkiteHimself

Netflix reports that viewership of 13TH has gone up 4000% in recent weeks. It’s a powerful documentary that explains why we’re in the social mess we’re in. Highly recommended! GRADE: A

14 thoughts on “13TH [Netflix]

  1. Steve Oerkfitz

    Looks interesting but I tend to avoid anything that uses Angela Davis as a talking head. She may have been found not guilty but I believe her to be as complicit in murder as OJ.

  2. Deb

    It doesn’t help, of course, that one of the two major political parties in this country has been “aggressively pandering to the cracker element,” as my husband so succinctly puts it, for the past four decades. Guess which party I’m talking about? I’ll give you a clue—it’s the one that elected a guy who recently referred to statues of confederate leaders as “our beautiful history and culture.”

    1. george Post author

      Deb, with the coronavirus pandemic spreading fast, the Republicans are going to have to scramble to justify Trump’s handling of the crisis. All signs point to a growing disaster.

  3. Patti Abbott

    Reading Trevor Noah’s memoir now and how the South African white population controlled the black (and majority) people makes the US’s subjugation look benevolent. Certainly we all knew about apartheid but I have never had it spelled out so fully as BORN A CRIME does. What movie are you watching next?

    1. george Post author

      Patti, there’s a movie version of BORN A CRIME in the works, but it may be on hold now. Patrick’s movie choice is SHIRLEY–the Netflix bio-pic of Shirley Jackson–played by Elizabeth Moss. Diane and I are both eager to watch it.

      1. Michael Padgett

        “Shirley” is absolutely terrific–great choice. I saw it on Hulu a few weeks ago and have been tempted to watch it again.

      2. george Post author

        Michael, I’ve been a fan of Shirley Jackson since I read THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE in the 1960s. And, of course, “The Lottery.” Patrick chose SHIRLEY. My children have good taste in films.

  4. Jeff Meyerson

    Besides Angela Davis, I am no fan of DuVernay. SELMA? I don’t think so. A WRINKLE IN TIME was OK.

      1. george Post author

        Todd, you’re right about the documentaries inexplicable ignorance of some basic facts about Capt. Marvel.

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