Set it Off (1996)

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I feel like movies in the 90s didn’t make as much of a spectacle of being diverse.  In today’s movie-going world, it’s a huge problem.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, the 90s (and before) weren’t a magical time, and the problems we have society existed then, too, and were far, far worse (even “liberal” presidents enacting Don’t Ask Don’t Tell or contributing to our overcrowded prison system), but it seems like audiences of the time didn’t have to beg and plead with studios and filmmakers to make movies that weren’t all white.

If a movie like Set it Off came out today, it’d be huge news.  But back then, it was just another crime movie.  Four black women (one of whom is a lesbian) rob banks as a means of empowerment.  I mean, maybe Jerry Falwell shit a chicken at the time of its release, but other than that it got generally positive reviews from critics and made a damn healthy return at the box office.  There’s not even a “controversy” sub-section on the movie’s Wikipedia page!

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