The Twenty SS20 Issue

Clash: Interracial Relationships In Films

By Catarina Wilk

Love has no boundaries. Well, at least it should not… Age, disability, origin and religion are all terms that real (meaning mutual) love totally ignores. That is not only a strong statement, but also a true inspiration for diverse industries that address the clash between different cultures, religious orientations and age groups by implementing this explosive topic in various forms. Speaking of this, especially today’s film and publishing industries seem to be highly interested in this specific phenomenon called unconditional love.

Starting off with films, the film industry with all its different genres offers a broad array of films that take interracial relationships into account. But why do writers and directors seem to be so interested in this topic? Well, one reason for this might be the fact that, especially in the United States, the number of interracial couples is steadily and very fast-growing since the 1960s. One could even say that it is more common than ever to see ethnically different couples  in comparison to former times.

So, let’s start with the 1960s, an era which, unfortunately, was not easy for interracial couples. We all remember Stanley Kramer’s and William Rose’s iconic film “Guess who’s coming to dinner” which stars Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn and her niece Katharine Houghton as well as Sidney Poitier. This good old Hollywood classic is seen as a positive representation of the subject of interracial marriage (which historically was illegal in most Southern states of the US at that time…unbelievable!).

How dangerous it was for someone to love somebody with a different ethnical background shows this touching HBO documentary film “The Loving Story”.
“This documentary tells the inspiring and heartwarming story of Mildred and Richard Loving, an interracial couple who married in 1958 despite Virginia’s anti-miscegenation laws.”

Fortunately, times have changed and our society is generally more open when it comes to multicultural couples. A very modern and humorous way of dealing with this particular topic is definitely ‘Amar Akbar & Tony’ by writer and director Atul Malhotra. This remarkable film combines “the storytelling styles of UK independent cinema with that of the Bollywood narrative” and provides a brilliant insight into present Great Britain and its unique multicultural mix represented by a Sikh (Amar), a Muslim (Akbar) and an Irish Catholic (Tony) who fall in love in present-day London.
Amar, Akbar & Tony is released on VOD on November 2nd and will be available on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Blinkbox, Virgin Media Cable, Virgin Media Online Movies, Talk Talk Cable, Eirecom Cable and Google Play.

 

In 2015, we live in a globalised and multicultural world and modern society’s views reflect the world’s development. Basically, there is no reason why a person’s ethnic or religion should be a barrier in terms of love. The British pop singer Barry Ryan finds the right words that perfectly sum up this topic: “Love is love”. And he is so right. That’s it.