Starr Carter must deal with living in two different worlds, a poor neighbourhood she lives in with mainly black people to the rich and white people she goes to a nice prep school with. She is struggling to hold everything together which is going to be put to the ultimate test when she is a witness of a fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil. Can she find her voice and still stay safe?
The Hate U Give is a truly powerful and well acted film which was the 9th Secret Screening film from Cineworld. Quite possibly the best one yet I would say, a film that I really didn’t have any knowledge about at all and it was refreshing to watch a film and see everything unfold without knowing what was going to happen.
Starr has had a rough start in life as her father Maverick had been in prison in the past for drug dealing as part of the King Lords who pretty much run all of Garden Heights with drug dealing. This was something Khalil ended up mixed up with due to trying to take care of his younger brother and sick grandmother. When his death because major national news, everything about him is turned against the poor young man who had not done anything wrong and was shot by a white police officer.
This kickstarted the series of events of the black people protesting against the police and Starr must decide if she will testify as a witness in the case. But wondering if it will even make a difference at all or not. This is when the lines are blurred and it makes for a truly distressing watch. It is so horrible to think that people still live in fear like this because of the colour of their skin. I find those scenes very uncomfortable, yet this still needs to be shown for as long as people still live in fear!
Starr has a white boyfriend named Chris from school and has kept everything separate from him and he cannot understand why she will not let him come to her house and actually hang out with him more often. When the shooting makes the news he starts to piece things together. As well as balancing this Starr finds her school life a lot tougher as the privileged white kids decide to protest leaving school for Khalil and this was not something she could understand as they did not know him and just wanted to skip school. This pushes her school friendships to the brink as she sees a different side to Hailey.
Not forgetting that her mother is a very powerful individual in her life and wanting the best for Starr, her half-brother Seven and younger brother Sekani. Putting them in a better school like her mother had done for her, giving them a better chance to get out and have a better quality of life. Even with the struggle to balance Starr was really going to come into her own and realise that she should always be confident to use her voice.
Amandla Stenberg is truly outstanding in the leading role as Starr, showing that she has come a long way since being Rue in the first Hunger Games film! Her range of emotions throughout the film were outstanding and I really was blown away by how good she was in the film. Regina Hall and Russell Hornsby were both strong as her parents. Throwing in Anthony Mackie in a rather nasty role compared to what we are used to seeing him in.