*Disclaimer! This is a rant and contains spoilers! If you don’t like reading criticism about woke culture, skip this!
I’m not normally looking to rant on my blog. But from time to time, when a movie (or book) annoys me so much, I feel the need to express myself in a ranting manner.
This is the case with You People on Netflix. Last night I was searching for another comedy to watch. The third in a row after watching Rush Hour 1 and 2. So I saw this film featuring Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Eddie Murphy and thought to myself “This could be fun. It has potential.” And hit play without watching the trailer.
30 minutes in and I was already annoyed to the point of wanting to rant about it in a blog post. I’m gonna be honest though. I wanted to quit watching. But then I couldn’t have written a proper article on it, could I? So I kept watching… And watching… And my patience kept screaming at me for doing this to myself. At some point, it ended, fortunately, but my brain still wanted to retch it out of my head. It was that bad!
What’s it about?
You must be wondering what this attempted comedy is about. In short, Ezra (played by Jonah Hill) falls in love with Amira (played by Lauren London), a woman from the opposite side of the spectrum you could say. You see, Ezra is a white Jewish guy, while Amira is a black Muslim woman. Oh, and Ezra is also a tattooed rebel who opposes his community’s religious way of life.
But anyway, he loves Amira and she loves him and that’s all that matters, right? WRONG! Because their families don’t quite know how to take this.
On the one hand, there’s Ezra’s family who’s trying to be as woke as possible attempting to please Amira’s black family. There’s his dad who’s acting like he’s never had a conversation with anyone but his wife. Then there’s his lesbian Jewish sister and his mom. His mom, Shelley, whose attempts at being inclusive and modern make her socially inappropriate, not to mention a woke caricature.
On the other hand, there’s Amira’s family. Her father is some sort of a self-proclaimed family protector who’s set on making Ezra’s life miserable for dating and wanting to marry his daughter. Oh, and there’s also her mom and brother. But while Ezra’s family is socially awkward, Amira’s is right-on antisemitic, mean, and entitled.
You People, an attempted comedy woke fiasco
Even if at first it appears to be a typical rom-com with the guy falling in love with a girl and their families bumping heads and coming between the couple, IT IS NOT! You People wants to preach to us about something. About the moral and political modern issues of the US. Things like religion, LGBTQ, history, vaccines, police brutality, mixed families, and above all, racism.
Maybe I wouldn’t have had such a big problem with this had it been done well. If it had been at least funny and not so obviously politically biased. But the way this movie presents itself, I can’t call it comedy! There’s not a single moment I found funny. Not a single moment I laughed. There’s no good sign of humor in it, other than Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Eddie Murphy starring in it. This ridiculous woke content is at best an attempted comedy and at worst, a woke antisemitic fiasco.
Among all the ridiculousness happening in You People, there are a few scenes and aspects that really triggered me.
The Holocaust vs slavery scene
Yes, that’s correct! While having dinner or lunch together, Ezra’s parents and Amira’s parents argue about which community was more oppressed.
Akbar: “Are you trying to compare the Holocaust with slavery?”
Shelley: “Oh, no, no, no, no, I’m not doing…I mean, I wouldn’t do that.” To which, after thinking about it, she finally stands up for herself and adds: “Although, you know, if you think about it, I think the Blacks and the Jews have a similar struggle.”
Fatima: “So you are kind of sort of comparing the two.”
Arnold (Ezra’s dad): “Well, the Jews were technically the original slaves.”
Akbar: “Oh, you going back to Egypt. You do know that that was 3,500 years ago? Slavery is one great-grandparent away from us.”, insinuating that their slavery was too many years ago to cry about that. To which Arnold answers with: “I don’t have to go back to Egypt. I just go back 75 years.”, also pointing out that the Jews make up only one-half of 1% of the world’s population which is due to systematic annihilation.
Akbar’s response to that is the most invalidating and probably the most antisemitic thing said in this movie: “The one and one-half percent of the population that you make up seems to be doing pretty good right now.”
The only good thing in this scene was that Shelley and Arnold finally dropped their politeness and attempts to please and stood up for themselves (and the Jews).
Amira’s entitled family and how they want special treatment because they are black and black people suffer and how they always assume racism.
Here’s an example. After the dinner failure above, Ezra and Amira go to bed and start discussing what they should do about their parents with Ezra saying “I mean, your dad’s intense, yeah, but we knew that going in.”
Amira responds “What is that supposed to mean?” To which Ezra says “I guess it’s supposed to mean that he didn’t smile or make one joke or…” At this point, Amira interrupts him by saying “Oh wow, Are you trying to say that my dad’s an angry black man?” What follows is a bunch of nonsense logic.
Ezra: “I never said he was angry, no.”
Amira: “Yeah, but you’re saying a black man is intense, which is insinuating that he is.”
Ezra: “He is black and he is intense.”
Amira: “Yeah, but you don’t say that as a white person about a black person, calling them aggressive or intense. That’s being passive-aggressive saying that he’s an angry black man.”
How does it end?
It’s a rom-com, so you kind of know that the couple will eventually get back together and make it work. But HOW they make it work is another cringe-worthy moment. After not-so-accidentally meeting in the street, Akbar apologizes to Ezra for what he did, while Shelley asks Amira for forgiveness on behalf of all white and Jewish people (except on behalf of the racist ones). After which they proceed to literally walk in on their wedding, planned by none others than the two families.
Now do yourselves a favor and if you want to watch a nice comedy with diversity in it, go watch Rush Hour. Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker make a very entertaining duo. If you want to know what other romantic comedies to watch on Valentine’s day, check out my other post!