Film distributor, Magnolia Pictures has released the first trailer for its documentary, Whose Streets?, which offers an up close view on the events that plagued the streets of Ferguson, Missouri following the shooting of Michael Brown. This may not be the film many want to see, but its moving narrative is definitely worth the watch.
The nearly 2-minute teaser incorporates footage from various marches and demonstrations that erupted in the southern town in Aug. 2014. It also includes original news coverage and interviews from Mike Brown’s mother, Lesley Mcspadden, as well as other supporters at the time. As the clip revisits the 18-year-old’s final moments and the unjust treatment of his slain body, audio of protesters chanting plays, in a cry for justice. “It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains,” they cheer.
“Every day Americans experience a mediascape that humanizes whiteness, delving into the emotional lives of privileged white protagonists while portraying people of color as two-dimensional (and mostly negative) stereotypes,” directors, Sabaah Folayan and Damon Davis said in an official statement on the doc’s site. “Nowhere was this more apparent than in the case of Mike Brown, who, in spite of being college bound & well regarded by his community, was portrayed as a ‘thug’ and a ‘criminal.’ For this reason, it is essential that Black people be the ones to tell our own true stories.”
In addition to hiring African-Americans to tell their story, the co-directors said the film serves as an ode to Brown as well as black culture, in all of its beauty and complexities. “We are making this film, in part, as tribute to our people—our deeply complex, courageous, flawed, powerful, and ever hopeful people—who dare to dream of brighter days. This is more than a documentary… This is a story we personally lived. This is our story to tell.
The documentary was originally shown at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival Jan. 2017. It will be receiving a theater debut however, on Aug. 11. Check out the powerful trailer for Whose Streets? above.