Today, August 16, 2013, I went to go watch a film I have been itching to see for a while now. Lee Daniels' The Butler tells the story of Cecil Gaines, an African American butler who starts his life in the cotton fields of Alabama, only to journey through thick and thin (as well as a marriage and two children) to the White House's doors. Cecil experiences once in a lifetime moments inside the White House as he serves Dwight D. Eisenhower handling the desegregation of schools, John F. Kennedy and the beginning of the Civil Rights movements, Lyndon B. Johnson and the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Richard Nixon and the Black Panther Party, all the way to Ronald Reagan and the problems arising out of South Africa.
Forest Whitaker (Academy Award winner for The Last King of Scotland), takes the roll of Cecil Gaines and exemplifies a true upholding to the struggles of an African American trying to make a living during these rough times. Oprah Winfrey (Academy Award nominee for The Color Purple), stars in the role as Gloria Gaines, the wife of Cecil Gaines. Oprah does not disappoint in reprising her wonderful acting skills in handling a housewife battling infidelity and alcoholism, all while trying to keep her family together under one roof during the troubling times of the Civil Rights movement.
Overall in the acting category, the actors did an excellent job in representing the characters in life and in the story. Overall, the story itself was truly remarkable in delivering a universal message in racism and what some are willing to go through and accept to do what is right for their loved ones. I give Lee Daniels' The Butler an 8/10 because of the story's strong theme in discrimination and that people reciprocate their understanding of the term in a new light to all races and cultures of the world.