Watch: Kwesi Thomas’ Short Doc Film ‘Battleground’ About Racism


Watch: Kwesi Thomas’ Short Doc Film ‘Battleground’ About Racism

by Alex Billington
April 22, 2021
Source: Vimeo

“Loving takes your further than ‘not hating’, because to love someone is to know what hurts them.” Yep. An important short doc film about racism. Battleground is the creation of filmmakers Kwesi Thomas & Mark Bone, developed through conversations immediately following the murder of George Floyd last year (finally there is some justice a year later). Vimeo premiered the 18-minute film and says: “the short captures the particular discomfort of having to argue for one’s value in a society that should care instead of question. Kwesi, a Black man, powerfully conveys these feelings to his co-director Mark, a white man, in the wake of George Floyd’s death last May.” This was made up in Canada, but still connects with the experiences of any Black person in North America. “The film [is] an attempt to articulate the confusing, vertiginous, experience of one’s skin being a site of social conflict, a ‘battleground,'” the filmmakers explain. It’s beautifully shot and features a number of meaningful conversations with many people about their experiences with racism today.

Thanks to Vimeo Staff Picks for the tip on this short. Description from Vimeo: “Battleground is a short doc conceived by Kwesi Thomas & Mark Bone which came to life through conversations immediately following the death of George Floyd. It addresses the life long struggle and confusion that many black people face in silence when growing up. It is an intimate look into the subtle, often overlooked moments of racism and the ensuing vulnerabilities that linger for life and which can shape identity.” Battleground is co-directed by the filmmakers Kwesi Thomas (making his directorial debut) & Mark Bone. With cinematography by Adam Madrzyk, and additional shots by Mark Bone. Plus an original score by Tim Mann. Mark explains: “I wanted to illuminate that racism can occur in small ways but still have a lifelong impact. A knee on a man’s neck for 8 minutes is shocking but I didn’t want to overlook the smaller moments of injustice that don’t make news headlines. The film explores these moments.” For more info, head to Vimeo. To see more shorts, click here.


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