15 May 2016 0 Comments

“Southside With You”…Barack and Michelle!

It’s a drama about Barack Obama and Michelle Robinson’s first date, in Chicago, in the summer of 1989. It stars Parker Sawyers as the twenty-eight-year-old Barack, a Harvard Law student and summer associate at aImage result for obama movie Chicago law firm, and Tika Sumpter, who also co-produced the film, as the twenty-five-year-old Michelle, a Harvard Law graduate and a second-year associate at the same firm. The results don’t resemble a stunt; far from it. “Southside with You,” is a fully realized, intricately imagined, warmhearted, sharp-witted, and perceptive drama, one that sticks close to its protagonists while resonating quietly but grandly with the sweep of a historical epic. This date took in an art gallery, sandwiches in the park, a political meeting and a trip to the movies – culminating in the legendary first kiss on a bench outside the Baskin-Robbins ice cream store, now commemorated by a plaque.

Image result for obama movieParker Sawyers is an eerily close likeness for the lanky, conceited, cigarette-smoking young Barack, a Harvard law student doing a summer associate programme at the prestigious a Chicago firm where he is mentored by beautiful, smart Michelle, played with charm and self-possession by Tika Sumpter.

The film has taken the accepted version of events and imagined the dialogue, ingeniously crafting a traditional romance within a walking-pace, real-time narrative, complete with meet-cute, breakup and makeup. Michelle is unimpressed by Barack’s swagger, disconcerted by the hole in the floor of his old car and not exactly delighted by the cigarettes he is smoking, though doesn’t mention it.

The road to the White House starts here … Southside With You
They talk about Michelle’s hard-working idealistic parents, about Barack’s troubled background and his drunk dad and imagines a later scene in a bar where she challenges him directly on not facing up to his emotions. They talk about their ambitions and Barack irritates her with a misjudged, patronizing homily about how she’s obviously not fulfilled at work. One subject they do not discuss is whether a woman should give up her career to be a wife and mom. When Barack returns, a tense four-way conversation begins, and Barack smoothly finesses this boss’s objection to the violence that concludes the film, suggesting that it was a safety valve and that the aggressor would have anticipated the existence of an “insurance policy” to minimize damage. That cleverly imagined scene puts on show Obama’s political acumen, diplomacy and instinct for negotiating with the white world. And it demonstrates all the nuances of race, class, gender politics and professional prestige far more interestingly and effectively than the usual “racism” moment.

The road to the White House starts here and unfold a story of twImage result for barack and michelleo young people who’s commitment to themselves and to the values of the american dream will ultimately come to fruition in having Barack and Michelle Obama becoming the 44th President and First Lady of the United States and first African-Americans to realize this dream.    

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