Things That Matter

Love Her Or Hate Her, Netflix’s ‘Knock Down The House’ Gives An Electrifying Account Of AOC’s Political Career From Humble Beginning To Victorious Win

Before Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became the media obsession of the year, she was an unknown bartender trying to get 10,000 petition signatures to become a candidate for New York’s 14th Congressional District primary race run. AOC was one of many women who answered the call to run after Trump was elected in 2016.

Documentarian Rachel Lears followed four of those progressive women who challenged incumbent Democrats and Republicans for their Congressional seats–creating a New Congress. “Knock Down the House” is the emotional foil to every other depressing political documentary out there. It will inform, inspire and …yes, it will make you cry.

From the opening scenes of AOC getting ready for a political appearance, the undertone is pure feminism.

CREDIT: Netflix

AOC talks about how simple it is for men to run for office. They have two outfit choices: sleeves rolled up or not? Already, on appearances, it’s more work for women.

Witnessing AOC in the early days, going up against all odds, will make you weep.

CREDIT: @_americaG / Twitter

It feels good being on the other side knowing that all those knocked doors, late nights counting petition signatures, and passing out flyers are worth it for you, AOC. She made it for us.

Many folks thought that her win would lose power for the 14th district.

CREDIT: Netflix

Incumbent Crowley was already vying to become Speaker of the House, and had so much seniority, Ocasio had to convince folks her win wouldn’t be a loss.

While AOC was the only successful candidate in the documentary, the work isn’t over for the other women.

CREDIT: @AllieGoardHRC / Twitter

Amy Vilela, whose 22-year-old daughter was denied medical care for lack of insurance and died in the hospital, is still speaking out for healthcare for all. Paula Jean Swearengin is running for West Virginia office once again in 2020.

Cori Bush is running for Missouri’s 1st congressional district again in 2020.

CREDIT: Netflix

Bush is a registered nurse, ordained minister, and mother of two teenagers. Bush was PAC Brand New Congress’s first candidate to support and they’re continuing their support for 2020.

We get to see a young AOC wearing sanitary gloves working her dang job.

CREDIT: Netflix

No doubt that millions of Americans are happy that AOC stayed in the race. She has used her place in Congress to call attention to the inequality that is hindering the growth of people in this nation.

AOC makes a life lesson out of people underestimating her.

CREDIT: Netflix

People think of waitressing and bartending as not a ‘real job,’ but AOC makes the point that it’s trained her to be able to stand on her feet 18 hours a day, take heat, and talk to people.

We also get to see AOC dogwalk Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley, the fourth most powerful Democrat in Congress.

CREDIT: Netflix

Nobody expected AOC to win. Crowley had been elected since 1999 with no contender. For the first time in 14 years, he had a contender and she won.

Crowley underestimated AOC so much, he sent a representative to give his statements at the only town debate.

CREDIT: Netflix

We got to see stellar footage of AOC shutting it down–dragging Crowley’s vote for the Iraq war, for his position on moving the Israeli embassy to Palestine territory, and for being an absent elected official.

We also got to see AOC passing out flyers with her niece.

CREDIT: Netflix

Folks were walking by telling her niece that she was next, she’d be a Congresswoman one day. This is one of the most touching moments in the documentary. It is so important to keep the younger generation motivated and this is one of those moments that shows the hope for an inclusive future.

The most iconic moment was this:

CREDIT: Netflix

AOC trying to energetically take up space before a local news debate with Joe Crowley. May we all seek to take up space like AOC. We are in a time when we need to be purposeful in taking up space and searching out the space we need to be taking up.

Fans want to mandate every young girl to watch this film.

CREDIT: @Poppy_Elizabeth / Twitter

She did the dang thing. She went up against a white guy in power and actually unseated him without taking a single corporate dollar. Her path to Congress is empowering and important for so many young girls and boys of color.

We got some very cute home videos of AOC cuando era niña.

CREDIT: Netflix

We saw her playing piano in church and seeing her as the only brown girl in her choir. We saw her whole extended family chip in to get them into the burbs.

We got some tender moments reminiscing about AOC’s father, who passed several years ago.

CREDIT: Netflix

She says that her father knew her soul better than anyone else on this planet. When he passed, while she was in college, it turned her life upside down.

It was this event that forced her to quit her non-profit job and work to pay her student loan debt and avoid foreclosing on their family home.

CREDIT: @EmpireofHerrera / Twitter

We can’t imagine the weight of that stress on top of the stress of campaigning (which by the way, is not a paying job) for her community. However, this story is one that is growing in commonality in our community. Young adults of color having to foot bills and hold down jobs to make sure that their families can stay in their homes. This is why we need more people like AOC fighting for families in Congress.

Five days after she was elected, we see her weeping on the steps of the Capitol.

CREDIT: Netflix

She tells us the story of how she elbowed her way into her dad’s road trip with the guys. The ended up at the Capitol and he told her that all of this belongs to us.

The documentary will literally rip the tears from your soul.

CREDIT: @gabeajs / Twitter

We watch AOC in disbelief as she learns she won her campaign. No tears. The only tears we get from AOC are her reflecting on her father’s last words to her: “Make me proud.”

“Knock Down the House” might be inspiring the next wave of women to run for office.

CREDIT: @leveecranes / Twitter

There’s no sugarcoating. These are the challenges faced by women who run for office. Is it worth it? Absolutely.

Seeing AOC’s reaction to her win is worth every minute of the emotional journey in “Knock Down the House.”

CREDIT: @voxdotcom / Twitter

Have you seen “Knock Down the House” yet? Comment below with your thoughts!

READ: From College To Congress, Here’s What We Know About AOC’s Longtime Boyfriend

The Trailer For ‘The Last Days Of American Crime’ Is A Pulse-Pounding Thriller You Need

Entertainment

The Trailer For ‘The Last Days Of American Crime’ Is A Pulse-Pounding Thriller You Need

Netflix / YouTube

Édgar Ramírez is one of the most handsome men in Hollywood, tbh. It helps that he is good at what he does as well. The Venezuelan actor and former journalist is in a new movie from Netflix called “The Last Days of American Crime.”

Imagine the story of the last crime ever committed in the U.S.

Netflix’s “The Last Days of American Crime” is a visual retelling of the famous graphic novel. The story is one of crime, big government, and action rolled into one film. Édgar Ramírez plays criminal Graham Bricke and he is after that proverbial last score before committing a crime in the U.S. becomes impossible.

The criminals in the movie are fighting against the implementation of a device the hinders criminals motionless. The device emits a sound that freezes them in their place preventing them from committing any crimes. Bricke experiences the device when robbing a bank and his brother dies.

The rest of the story is one of pursuing the ultimate final heist and getting revenge. The movie will leave you on the edge of your seat while you watch the criminals do everything in their power to make sure their last score is the best and most historic.

“The Last Days of American Crime” is out June 5 on Netflix.

Netflix has been delivering some stellar content with Latino actors in the leads. The trailer for “The Last Days of American Crime” promises a crime thriller with all of the emotional ups and downs you can handle.

READ: Edgar Ramirez Shocked Jimmy Fallon When He Shared Details From The Set Of ‘The Assassination Of Gianni Versace’

All Of The Documentaries Feminists Should Watch While In Quarantine

Entertainment

All Of The Documentaries Feminists Should Watch While In Quarantine

Netflix

Just because it might seem as if the world is on pause, it doesn’t mean that our efforts to learn more about it and better ourselves should be.

Documentaries alongside biographies can teach us so much about the world we live in and open our eyes to its complexities, even teaching us about the obstacles we did not know were right in front of us. As women of color, there are so many, and often times we use documentaries to learn about them, so we can better understand how to propel ourselves forward and continue to succeed. To make sure that you do too, we’re rounding up documentaries for you to learn, grow, and build hope from while in quarantine.

Check the documentaries we’re binging now that we’ve got the time below!

Becoming (2020)

Former First Lady Michelle Obama takes an intimate look at her life, relationships, and dreams in this documentary which sees her touring the country while promoting her book Becoming. The New York Times describes the film as showing “a familiar, albeit more carefree, former first lady.”

AKA Jane Roe (2020)

This documentary by Nick McSweeney highlights Norma McCorvey, the woman who made history as “Jane Roe” in the landmark 1973 Supreme Court case Roe vs. Wade. Beyond the shock value of the movie’s twist, which unearths the reasons why McCorvey ultimately turned her back on the movement that advocated for her right to choose, it tells a story about the ruthlessness of political agendas.

Abuelas: Grandmothers On A Mission (2013)

Three decades after Argentinean mothers created a movement demanding Argentinean officials to discover what happened with the sons and daughters who “disappeared” during Argentina’s Dirty War, the grandmothers continue their efforts in this documentary.

Chisholm ’72: Unbought & Unbossed (2004)

The historical documentary follows Brooklyn Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm during her campaign for the Democratic Party presidential nomination in 1972. It will serve as an impressive reminder of this Black woman’s might and the fight she managed to get us all passionate about.

Honeyland (2019)

This Oscar-nominated film is about a beekeeper in North Macedonia. Directed by Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov this documentary shows how the beekeeper’s life is affected when the ancient techniques she uses to farm bees are impacted by a new family who moves into the neighborhood and brings modern technology with them.

Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise (2016)

African- American poet Maya Angelou has her life depicted in the documentary that dives into her traumatic childhood and her life as a singer and dancer. The first feature documentary includes interviews with Oprah Winfrey, Hillary Clinton, and Common.

Knock Down The House (2019)

This documentary featuring Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the league of women who ran for Congress in 2018 including Cori Bush, Paula Jean Swearengin, and Amy Vilela made waves when it first debuted on Netflix. Just as it did for us, we imagine it will give you a whole heck of a lot of hope and pride in the woman who fight for our rights and country.