Movie review: The Blind Side

There's a tendency to always look askance at any film in which the story focuses on an African-American who is given a helping hand by a white person.

Not that there haven't been egregious examples of films in which the beneficent white person plays savior to the beleaguered black person. But not all films with that set-up are condescending, as some would have it.

Still, the politics of race are so muddled that it's automatically read in some quarters as paternalistic and arrogant, as though this is Hollywood's perpetual message: that the only possible way that a black person could get out from under is with help from someone white.

But what if a story is true? Sure, it's easy to dismiss The Blind Side as another of these films, based on the commercials - "Sandra Bullocks saves a Negro." It's only when you actually watch the whole film and see her spitfire performance - and the heartfelt one by newcomer Quinton Aaron as Michael Oher, the teen whose live she changes - that you see how unfair that kind of generalization can be.

Based on Oher's true story, The Blind Side is adapted from the book by Michael Lewis, about the sudden change in Oher's life when Leigh Ann Tuohy (Bullock) became part of it, almost by accident. Continued...

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