Essay about Ghost, Sam Wheat, A Murder Victim

Essay about Ghost, Sam Wheat, A Murder Victim

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In Ghost, Sam Wheat, a murder victim, fights desperately to both avenge his murder and to prevent the killing of his love interest, Molly. Sam enlists the aid of Oda Mae Brown, a sassy Black clairvoyant. Oda Mae appears as a con-woman who uses her supposed inherited ability of foresight and spirit channeling as quick earning cash schemes. However, Oda Mae encounters Sam’s ghost who pleads for her assistance. For the duration of the film, Oda Mae serves as Sam’s physical embodiment on the earthly plane. She is used at his behest and will. Her character witnesses little development beyond her relationship with Sam. In traditional Magical Negro fashion, Oda Mae performs Sam’s every command. Willingly, she commits identity fraud in which a $4 million transaction occurred. Also, Oda Mae determinedly convinced Molly that Sam’s spirit attempted contact with her, a point that Molly does not believe. Her unwavering subservience leads to not only identifying Sam’s killer, but also reconnecting Molly with Sam’s spirit. Moreover, Oda Mae’s assistance provides Sam with the courage to transition to the ethereal plane and accept his death.
Likewise, Benjamin Buford Blue, immortalized as “Bubba” in Forrest Gump, functions as the Magical Negro character of the timeless film. During the Vietnam War, Bubba befriends Forrest; the two share a diminished mental capacity, serve in the same platoon and have a similar Southern origin. Bubba describes to Forrest his unusual fondness for shrimp and dreams of creating a shrimping company after the war. Unfortunately, their platoon is ambushed leaving Bubba dead. Forrest rescues Bubba’s remains and is rewarded with the Medal of Honor for his valor in Vietnam. Upon his return to the United States and short-li...


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... are Black Americans. Unlike the stereotypical view of lower-class urban one parent families that film and media often depict of the Black existence in America, the Josephs have not only attained the American Dream in Mother Joe’s generation, but have continued on to do so in her daughter’s generation. For the same criticism that whites and Blacks hurled The Cosby Show received for portraying an idealistic or unattainable lifestyle for Black Americans to aspire, Soul Food presented Blacks as average and ordinary, but most importantly equal to whites. The characters in Soul Food are not dependent on whites to rebuild their family structure, but focus on internal concerns and tackle those issues from within. The film does not provide audiences with an overt political or social message, but posits a compelling narrative for the foundations of American family structures.

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