Kathryn Bigelow’s latest film, Detroit, is a glance 50 years into the past, about the horrific events that took place at the Algiers Motel during the height of the 1967 Detroit riots. As three white police officers use mind games, violence, and even murder on unarmed young black men, one black officer, Melvin Dismukes, see all the horror and offers the little help he can by telling the men to “survive the night.”
John Boyega, the U.K. actor and Hollywood darling (who will star in the upcoming action film Pacific Rim 2, out March 2018), recognized how audience members might view his character as an Uncle Tom for his actions (or lack thereof) but affirms that his character wasn’t that far off from the victims.
Boyega spoke with VIBE in Detroit for the premiere and acknowledged the weight of the film, but insists Bigelow’s latest work isn’t here to depress moviegoers but to spark conversation instead.
Detroit hits theaters nationwide Aug. 4.