In the Dark

The World as Imagination

Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2
Produced by Marvel Studios 
Directed and written by James Gunn 
Distributed by Walt Disney Studios 

The Lost City of Z
Produced by Plan B Entertainment 
Directed and written by James Gray,
based on David Grann’s book 
Distributed by Amazon Studios 

Mixed-race romance has become profitably au courant in popular culture today.  This is remarkable, given that the subject was verboten in Hollywood not so long ago.  Whatever their politics, film studios have always been ideologically committed to profits, and miscegenation, as it was once called, had been decidedly unprofitable, until Sidney Poitier showed up as Katharine Houghton’s fiancé in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner in 1967.  When Elia Kazan made Pinky in 1949, he was thought to be bursting the unacknowledged racial envelope.  The narrative concerns Pinky, a young Alabama woman played by Jeanne Crain.  Of mixed-race heritage, Pinky has been passing for white in the North while training to become a nurse.  A good number of theatergoers were disturbed to see black actress Ethel Waters turn up as Crain’s grandmother, sparking attempts to ban the film.

Today, it seems we’ve advanced to the next frontier.  The grandly...

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