What’s So Strange About the Johnsons Movie?

By Ericka Spaine

The Strange Thing about the Johnsons was created six years ago, but is just now becoming a topic in pop culture. Why it took so long to become popular, I’m not sure, but now all anyone wants to do is tell their friends to watch some weird ass film on Youtube to see their reactions. It’s almost the new “two girls one cup” but a lot less disgusting. The Strange Thing About the Johnsons is the story of a boy who falls in love with his father and begins to molest his father. I know what you’re picturing, a pale, angry, creepy boy who terrorizes his parents, but this is not the typical weird indie film. What’s creating the controversy is not the molestation, but that the family is black. I guess the role of being a parent molester was too crazy for even a white boy to want to play.


The film was created by a white director by the name of Ari Aster, which just added salt to the wound for many African American viewers. Even the negative reviews and controversy did not keep people from watching it. The short movie continues to grow more popular and receives more views every day from you nosy people. I was one of the nosy people who wanted to know what was so strange about the Johnsons, but after viewing the movie, I didn’t understand the anger that people felt.


The movie itself is well written, well directed, and also has fantastic actors. Past the weird, creepy, and disturbing atmosphere that the movie creates, it’s a good film that tackles being the victim of domestic violence and rape. Although the son and father are the two main characters, the film’s real star was the mother. She was annoying, fake, and very dislikeable. Even with all those shady qualities, she is a representation of many mothers in our community.

Now I’m not trying to receive a bunch of hate mail, so don’t think I’m trying to diss your mama, but so many children get molested, and the mother will say nothing about it. Although this movie does the opposite, the mother is still silent. So instead of being angry about the color of the actors, but angry that nothing was stopped. Be mad at yourself because race was the first thing you got angry about.


The problem with the film isn’t that “black people don’t do that shit”. It’s that they do, and no one wants to speak about it. Child molestation and rape are very prevalent in the black community, but many people sweep it under the rug and do not want to acknowledge it. Instead of complaining that they didn’t use white actors, complain that this is such a big problem in the African American community.

We should all applaud the actors, and their fearlessness to be able to take on an abnormal role. We should applaud the director, the writers, everyone. But most importantly, we should talk to our children. Nothing will change if we don’t start the conversation in our community about these issues. Maybe the strange thing about the Johnson is just another passing fad, or maybe it’s the start to a conversation the black community has been avoiding for years.

The Strange Thing About the Johnsons from Faux Beef on Vimeo.


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