American Revolution 2 | Chicago Reader

American Revolution 2

78 minutes 2013

In the pop-culture shorthand, the protests surrounding the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago consisted of white kids opposing the Vietnam war; this black-and-white cinema verite documentary (1969) offers a welcome corrective by looking at the city's black underclass and the economic issues it brought to the mix. Filmmakers Mike Gray and Howard Alk open with electrifying footage of cops and protesters clashing on Michigan Avenue, but the remainder of the film is more prosaic, following the Black Panthers as they try to forge an alliance with a group of poor whites in Uptown who call themselves the Young Patriots. The discourse ranges from the eloquent to the pedestrian, and the film gets too bogged down in talk to reach a satisfactory conclusion, but it provides a good sense of how the left began to fracture after the violence in Chicago.

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