“Something the Lord Made” Film Analysis

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“Something the Lord Made” is a film that documents the work of Vivian Thomas and Alfred Blalock in an effort to cure blue baby syndrome. It is a dramatic documentary. This film showcases extraordinary acting from Dante “Mos Def” Smith and Alan Rickman. They both work together exceptionally while elements of the storyline helped to capture the mood of the time period, emphasizing the tensions that existed between both whites and people of color. The camaraderie that Smith and Rickman express throughout the film coincides with it’s message. Through their continuous interaction, the viewer begins to realize that their motives were mutual as they both sought to make a change for “human race”, which was really the only race in each of their eyes; as opposed to the mentality that those around them expressed. The realism in the acting makes for a genuine concern for this message as well. For example, at the end of the first film excerpt below, Alfred Blalock, played by Alan Rickman, explains how his bouts with death and health problems made him recognize the value of human life, which inherently inspired the uncommon mentality of Alfred Blalock as a white man during this era. With Vivian Thomas in the crossfire of racial segregation, although in a very different respect, he too can relate to “death” and “pain”. All of these critical factors tie in to what makes this film inspiring to a generation that is not aware of the issues that surround this time period. Coupled with the casual jazz music that plays along with the traversing scenes where Vivian seems feel the intensity of each pair of eyes that sees him as an outcast, the movie offers an interesting perspective on the racial tensions of an era. It creates a mood of the non-chalant attitude of that surrounded the bigotry of the 1930′s; an aspect of the film that should be acknowledged and appreciated.



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