Blood Brothers Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali, a documentary based on 20th Century’s two of the most influential and bold Black men, is now out on Netflix. Based on Johnny Smith and Randy Roberts’ book ‘Blood Brothers: The Fatal Friendship Between Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X’, Marcus A Clarke has directed the 90 minutes documentary.
The synopsis for Netflix Blood Brothers read – From a chance meeting to a tragic fallout, Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali’s extraordinary bond cracks under the weight of distrust and shifting ideals.
– Blood Brothers: Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali Review contains no spoilers –
Netflix documentary Blood Brothers Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali begins with their family members talking about how great of friends these two influential black men were. The documentary features Malcolm X’s daughter Ilyasah Shabazz, Muhammad Ali’s brother Rahman, and daughters Maryum and Hana. As soon as the question is asked, ‘what ended their friendship’ we are shown footage of Ali saying, “Destiny can take your best friend as an instrument to cause you harm and your worst enemy to do you good.” Director Marcus Clarke takes us back and shows us how everything started and ended.
The documentary narrates the backstory, struggles and achievements of both Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali (whose name was Cassius Clay) in a parallel format. During their childhood and adulthood, both these men have been at the receiving end of racism. We learn about the incidents that made them such strong voices of the Black people in the 20th Century. The documentary also emphasises how Marcus Garvey, Ali’s experiences at Louisville town and Elijah Muhammad played key roles in their lives. The experiences and individuals shaped them as compelling people the world had seen.
The style of storytelling, editing and the addition of archive footages of Muhammad and Malcolm make the documentary an intriguing watch. We get a clear picture of their personalities as fiery and charismatic fighters and leaders. We learn what they believed in and how they raised awareness about the atrocities of white people on the Black community. As Dr Cornel West says, “Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali were the two most freest of Black Men in the 20th century.” Their brotherhood was talked about a lot which also left many white supremacists worried.
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Blood Brothers Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali Review: Final Thoughts
The 90-minutes long Blood Brothers Netflix documentary on Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X’s friendship and their fight for the rights of Black Muslims and Black people, in general, is worth watching. As someone said in the programme that people usually talk about Muhammad’s illness or Malcolm X’s assassination, their great works towards their people are hardly highlighted. Marcus A Clarke has focused on it while also telling us the tragic tale of their friendship. It’s like an impactful movie where the ending makes you emotional.
Blood Brothers: Malcolm X and Muhammad Ali is now streaming on Netflix.