The Movie Crash

Topics: African American, Southern United States, Martin Luther King, Jr. Pages: 6 (2476 words) Published: May 9, 2006
Martin Luther King stated "Yes, I am intouchable, and every Negro in the United States of America is an intouchable" (The African American Dream). Americans live their lives afraid to touch one another due to their differences in beliefs, backgrounds and ethnicities. Each person lives in a dream which separates them from reality and from the truth. Because they are afraid to have contact with others unlike themselves, they rely on stereotypes to determine people's identity which causes their perceptions of the world to be distorted. They are resistant to leave their comfort zone and they fail to attempt to understand the people around them. They are sleepers in their own dreams afraid to awaken to reality. Their only opportunity to understand one another is by unintentionally crashing into one another. However, when they crash, their emotions are driven by fear which prevents them from awakening from their reality. Dreams are often deferred due to fear. Fear of the unknown and facing reality. Each character in the film, Crash has a fear of other people unlike themselves. They find it difficult to leave their border space and enter the comfort zone of others. There is a blind fear which prevents them from breaking the boundaries which separates them from the people surrounding them. They use stereotypes as way to judge others and keep people at a distance in order to avoid interaction. Their form of resistance focuses on identifying the differences between themselves and failing to recognize the similarities. As sleepers in their own reality, people tend to judge people by stereotypes, which alters a person's identity causing them to reach a point where they must resist the conforms of society. The character, Cameron Thayer, plays an African American television producer. His character displays how an African American male feels he needs to manipulate his method of thinking in order to survive in American society. Our society has molded people to develop their psyche which conforms his character to choose to put his reputation over his dignity and self-respect. Within thirty-six hours, his wife, Christine Thayer, and her husband are thrown into a world in which they believed they were above. Due to the fact, they were in the upper class; they believed that success would force others to respect them. They were proven wrong by a person who is supposed to embody the American dream and all it stands for. The American dream is centered on equality and equal rights for all. This dream is eliminated when an officer of the law who is supposed to embody the basic principles of America steals their dignity and self respect by molesting a woman in front of her husband. The act was done deliberately in order to dehumanize the couple, as well as demonstrate the power of the American dream in molding people into its criteria. The American dream embodies the ideals our forefathers believed were significant and even with centuries to master these concepts, Americans fall short of meeting its expectations. The American dream has been defined as the idea that through hard work, courage, and determination one achieve prosperity. In addition, the American dream focuses on equality, justice, fairness, liberty and security in one's nation. Americans value having a sense of security, sense of justice, and equal rights for all citizens (Nepo 67). Each of these principles was violated in one scene in various ways. The scene takes place when a young, upper class, African American couple are pulled over by the police because their vehicle fits the description of a car which has been hijacked. There are four main characters in this scene; however the actions of the couple are the most relevant to the influence conformity has over a person's train of thought. From the character, Cameron Thayer's perspective society has developed a specific criteria and procedure which he must follow in order to continue to be welcomed in...

Bibliography: Crash. The Internet Movie Database. Retrieved on December 10, 2005 from
Kochan, Thomas A. Restoring the American Dream: a working families ' agenda for America. MIT Press. Cambridge: Mass, 2005.
Nepo, Mark. Deepening the American dream: reflections on the inner life and spirit of democracy. San Francisco: CA, 2005.
The African American Dream: A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration from the greatest Sermons of Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Retrieved on December 10, 2005 from
The American Dream. Wikipedia Encyclopedia. Retrieved on December 10, 2005 from
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