Martin Luther King and Tavis Film Analysis
Submitted By VXen007
In the PBS film by Tavis Smiley, “MLK: A Call to Conscience,” Tavis explored Martin Luther King’s stand against the Vietnam War and the influence of his legacy today. Tavis reached out to scholars, associates and personal friends of Dr. King who gave personal accounts of their feelings toward MLK and his movements. These events will also be supported by evidence from two other films, “Eyes on the Prize: Episode 4” which profiled MLK’s last year prior to his assassination, and “The Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.” which provided additional details in regard to the FBI’s potential conspiracy against Dr. King.
This film was chosen as my main source for analysis due to a personal connection with how I relate to Dr. King and his convictions for what he believes in. Just as Dr. King described Americans becoming complacent to the injustices of justice in his speech, we also tend to become complacent about why we celebrate this brilliant leader’s life. His drive and determination should be modeled by every American citizen, especially by those in successive generations who have been denied their dreams. I also intend to highlight why his ideology could live and thrive in today’s policy.
The central message of this documentary builds on when Dr. King gave his speech, “A Call to Conscience” April 4, 1967 at the Riverside Church in New York City. As Vincent Harding, a close friend and author of this speech would explain the one thing that never changed during rewrites was where and why this speech came from MLK’s conscience. He believed the conscience is based on truth and hoped to also summon the conscience of America. MLK delivered the most challenging and most controversial speech yet. He would risk an alliance between the movement and the government, his standing as a national leader, and be called a traitor. He not only spoke toward issues of...