I think this trailer--and this flick--will appeal to a lot of the Horde. It's not really for me. The revenge conceit doesn't really move me much, nor does freedom achieved simply through the benevolence of white people. Leaving that aside, what scares me most is the portrayal of black women in this testoronic revenge fantasy. I really loath the "Union soldiers raped and killed my wife, now I'm out for revenge" motif. It is a lie on several levels, ranging from history to humanism. But reversing that history only makes it slightly more true, while leaving some of the biggest lies in place.
Perhaps no aspect of my recent foray into the Civil War and slavery has moved me more than my investigations into the colored soldiers. It's nice to see black men, so often rendered as bystanders, grabbing guns, asserting their humanity, and surely enacting some measure of revenge.
It's also really dangerous to get caught up in that narrative. The violence is seductive and can find you arguing along the same barren lines as those you allegedly oppose. It is not merely wrong to focus on the militarism of the Civil War because those who do so generally don't want to talk about slavery. It is wrong because such a focus says that the only thing important about war are those who carry the guns.