Ten years in the making, Ford’s award-winning Netflix documentary started as an intimate film about his brother’s murder in 1992. But it has become part of a national argument about whether young black men can feel safe in the US“Black lives are too easy to take in America because we don’t want to question why people are so afraid of black and brown people to begin with,” says Yance Ford, bluntly. “And that’s what I want Strong Island to do.” When Ford began making his documentary, 10 years ago, this was not a question that the US was particularly interested in asking itself. In the intervening years, following a succession of slayings of innocent and unarmed African Americans, it has become part of a national conversation – although it is turning into more of a national argument. What began for Ford as an intimate, personal film now finds itself part of that argument.
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