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Home > Secteur-English > General > Gods and Kings, and Hollywood denial of Blacks

Gods and Kings, and Hollywood denial of Blacks

Mr Ridley Scott, a famous Hollywood director, is part of a movie tradition set in stone, to deny Blacks their place in history. In his latest production, called Gods and Kings, he does not shy away from making a movie about the Exodus, ancient egyptian history, where he shows all the characters as white europeans. We can understand that in the times of Cecil B. De Mile, the public was still infantlized enough to accept such distortions.
But in our times, when archeologists, historians, and mostly the world public are aware of the existence of Africa
as a center of Black civilization since antiquity, such a production should be unthinkable.
A movie is a representation, an opinion. Mr Ridley Scott is showing that in his opinion, denying Black people their place in history, is something worth spending efforts and millions of dollars.
Perpetuating the myth of a white Moses, a white Pharaoh, and European looking Hebrews, is something that comes from a willing agenda, which feeds notions of racial superiority, of skin tone based international politics.
This time around, there is no doubt that in Africa, in the Black communities in America and the African Diaspora,
such a movie is going to be viewed with contempt, and disappointment.
Trying to rob Africans of their place in History, on their own continent, is nothing less than trying to disempower them.
We could make a movie on a story based in China, use white actors, and call them by Chinese names. But we would have to make it somehow obvious that the story is Chinese, and we would also have to explain it is a parody.
In the case of Mr Ridley Scott’s latest production, no such explanations, or even attempts at justifications are made. He presents the story of the Exodus set in ancient Egypt a a white story, period.
Behind all the glitz of special effects, classic adventure movie scripting of good guys bad guys going at it, there is spitting at the face of Africans. Shamelessly. Not even the blinking of an eye at history or archeology.
Is this done willingly ? Well, when you have all the budget you need, to make such a production on a central historical and cultural theme like the Exodus from Egypt, the least one could expect is minimal research, like where and when is the action set to take place, what does the current research say etc. Not only is there no such attempt on the part of Mr Ridley Scott and his production partners, but they deliberately chose to ignore any of these basic elements. Gods and Kings is not art, it is racial argumentation disguised as art.
Africans, for Mr Scott and his investors, are still people whose culture, history, and existence, could be denied, ridiculed, and plundered. The profits made from such ventures are in line with colonial thinking, and there is no doubt about it, Gods and Kings will be added to the list of cultural anti-African propaganda, to be studied by African students, on the topic of Hollywood representation of Africans.
Not content with the denial of Native American perspective in their story telling, the script writers and pundits of Hollywood are deliberatlely doing the same to Africans about the history of their continent.
This conquering mentality of other people’s cultures shows the problematic of weakness and disbelief in one’s own cultural heritage. If Mr Ridley Scott had something in his own culture he could be proud of, he would not need to go on such an expensive expedition to ridicule and deny other people’s history. And make his people play the roles of the ones he holds in contempt. The message of the Exodus story for Africans is, that eventually there comes a point where the people being exploited by these power ploys are freed, and their oppressors left with facing their own stupidity. Mr Ridley Scott can continue being the mouth piece for commercial consumerist colonial debilitation. Millions of Africans will just add this venture to the list of useless attempts to ridicule and disempower them. It didn’t work with Mussolini against Ethiopia, it didn’t work against Mandela’s South Africa, it certainly won’t work with Moses and Pharaoh. The history and culture of Africa is in African hands. Repeating a Moroccan proverb, a famous African American musician, Mr Jimi Hendrix aptly remarked : "All castles made of sand wash to the sea, eventually".

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