BLACK AND BLUE

"Slightly Short of Greatness"

Quality:
Content: -3 Excessive content and/or worldview problems.
NoneLightModerateHeavy
Language
Violence
Sex
Nudity

What You Need To Know:

BLACK AND BLUE takes place in New Orleans, as rookie cop Alicia West begins her duties. After returning from the Army, Alicia’s been on the job for a few weeks, eager to bring some order and justice to her hometown. One night, she agrees to take a night shift for her regular white partner, who’s been working with another black officer. Told to wait in the police car, Alicia hears gunshots and runs to see the black officer stand by while a white policeman shoots a black civilian in cold blood. Suddenly, she’s on the run from these men, who want nothing else but the footage on her body camera.

BLACK AND BLUE is sometimes unrealistic, and the ending takes a rather silly turn. Still, the movie quality is very high, and the performances almost overshadow the script’s flaws. BLACK AND BLUE has a strong moral, redemptive worldview, with an emphasis on fighting for justice, truth, sacrifice, and doing the right thing. However, the amount of foul language and some of the violence in BLACK AND BLUE are excessive and ultimately unacceptable.

Content:

(BB, C, Ro, PC, LLL, VVV, AA, DD, MM):

Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Strong moral worldview throughout with redemptive elements as main character risks her life multiple times to do the right thing, major themes of the importance of truth and honesty above corruption, a man sticks to what is right and what he believes despite betraying his brothers and being physically tortured, dominant themes of good versus evil with what is right and just eventually prevailing

Foul Language:
About 110 obscenities and profanities, including some “f” words, three GDs, multiple light profanities, a few crude name callings as well as one example of a derogatory exclamation, and some racial slurs

Violence:
Extreme gun violence as well as hand to hand combat, many shootouts and one execution type of scene involving blatant murder that’s shown multiple times, a significant amount of blood shown throughout the entire movie, close up on a woman mending a severe wound by gluing her skin together, a man is beaten with a board that has nails protruding out of it

Sex:
No sex

Nudity:
No nudity

Alcohol Use:
A man presumed to be intoxicated stumbles outside a convenience store

Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
No smoking and characters speculate some men deal drugs, but nothing is shown; and,

Miscellaneous Immorality:
Strong levels of corruption within the police force, many examples of lying and deception at times to superiors for personal gain, abuse of power shown multiple times as some police officers use their position to control others, gang violence, many examples of racism throughout the movie as an underlying negative theme is “black vs white,” but this ideology is condemned by the protagonist, a woman presents herself as a bad role model for her child because she doesn’t keep him in school and involves him with gang-related issues.

More Detail:

BLACK AND BLUE follows a rookie black police officer named Alicia West in New Orleans who finds herself fighting for justice and her life after seeing something not intended for her eyes. BLACK AND BLUE has a strong moral worldview with an emphasis on fighting for justice, truth, sacrifice, and doing the right thing, but the amount of foul language and the violence are excessive and ultimately unacceptable.

BLACK AND BLUE takes place in New Orleans, as rookie cop Alicia West begins her duties. After returning from time in the Army, Alicia’s been on the job for a few weeks, eager to help bring some order and justice to her hometown. The local law-abiding citizens don’t have faith in the police to do their jobs, and many people outright disrespect them.

One night, Alicia covers an extra shift on behalf of her partner, Kevin. Alicia greets veteran officer Deacon Brown with readiness. Later that same night, Deacon gets a phone call that leads them to an abandoned warehouse in a bad part of town. Deacon forcefully instructs her to stay in the car, and he leaves. However, after hearing multiple gunshots, she carefully makes her way around this warehouse searching for her fellow officer. Alicia turns the corner to see Officer Brown, as well as two narcotics officers, with their guns pointed at a young black man and some dead bodies around him. Alicia sees this last one pleaded with a man named Malone for his life. He swears that he won’t tell what he’s been doing, but Malone ignores him and shoots him in the head.

In shock, Alicia stumbles back, which attracts the attention of the others. Officer Brown yells at her for not staying in the car. Suddenly, she gets shot multiple times by the third officer, with her police body camera catching it all on film. Her bulletproof vest caught most of the bullets, but one grazed her side, leaving her wounded and bleeding. She falls through the floor to the ground level.

Alicia immediately assesses her situation. She gets up fast and looks for help. When she calls the dispatcher, Malone intercepts the call, informing them that she got “spooked”, and everything is under control. Suddenly, she’s on the run from these men, who want nothing else but the footage she has on her body camera and who consider her life to be only a liability.

Now, Alicia must get this footage back to the precinct to bring these crimes to light.

BLACK AND BLUE bears a striking resemblance to TRAINING DAY, the 2001 film starring Denzell Washington and Ethan Hawke. However, the script takes a more racially driven turn, with “Black” and “Blue” representing the opposing sides in the controversy between the police and black communities in the United States. In some parts, the script is unrealistic, and the ending takes a rather cheesy turn to an otherwise more intense story. Still, the movie quality is very high, and the performances almost overshadow the script’s flaws. As Officer West, Naomie Harris is excellent.

BLACK AND BLUE follows a primarily moral, redemptive worldview, with a fight for truth and justice being the overall theme, including a main character who’s willing to give her life to do what’s right. BLACK AND BLUE has some light Romantic, politically correct elements about injustice in the New Orleans Police Department, by both white and black officers, against the black community, but these elements aren’t overbearing or over the top. However, the movie does have a high amount of foul language, with some racial slurs. The violence is also rather extreme, with multiple shootouts, blood and hand to hand fighting. BLACK AND BLUE would be a much better, more acceptable movie without the frequent foul language and extreme violence, perhaps even one of the year’s better movies for mature audiences. As it stands now, however, MOVIEGUIDE® cannot recommend it. See our CONTENT section for more information.

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