The event that took place Wednesday in the nation’s capitol could not have been timed better for a historical documentary on the Ku Klux Klan and its history in American culture and radicalism.
Written by historical documentarian and French film director David Korn-Brzoza, “Ku Klux Klan: An American Story” is timely, enlightening and necessary.
The two-part series on the Invisible Empire is engaging, easy to follow and at times, intense. The smart use of decades-old footage and diverse informants create a cushion of comfort for viewers without compromising truth or perspective. Additionally, Korn-Brzoza’s incorporation of former Klan members, Civil Rights activists and radical right-wing specialists offers a much needed balance to the ongoing discussion of exclusion.
The first episode lays into the events leading up to the creation of the Klan, the end of the Civil War and a defeated South, and acts as a seminar. It breaks down the organization’s history into three distinguishable parts: inception, membership, and corporate capitalization.
The second episode, slower in pace and evidence-driven, relates the organizations influence in political and governmental and the outcomes of past and present crimes committed against black and brown communities. It also highlights the ‘ultimate’ destruction of the exclusive organization’s enterprise and its reinvention in the 21st century.
As an individual greatly intrigued by the inception and infiltration of race supremacy, I was blown away by the strength of the documentary’s ability to deepen viewer understanding without leaning one way or the other. True to the ethics of journalism and the mission of MagellanTV, which is where the documentary can be found, “Ku Klux Klan” maintains a certain level of objectification that provides a safe space for all mindsets.
Tom Lucas, executive producer and co-founder of MagellanTV, received the “fascinating and disturbing” documentary just weeks before it aired. After watching it, he and his team decided obtained exclusivity on the title and plan to run the series for free through February.
“We felt like we could make an impact,” Lucas said, highlighting the film’s high level of journalism and story manifestation. He wanted to offer viewers a profound and illuminating experience as they learned about the roots of American Extremism.
Like “Birth of a Nation” — a cinematic revelatory film produced in 1915 — Lucas recognized the risk of the series being utilized as propaganda to push extremist agendas.
“You can never tell people how to watch a documentary or read a book,” he said. He added this film isn’t for [extremist or supremacist], it’s for everyone else looking to educate themselves and understand.
Lucas, a film producer himself, has never met Brzoza, but recognizes him as the high-quality, authentic history filmmaker that he strives for and for which MagellanTV seeks.
Much of Brzoza’s work relates to European affairs and military history: “Hitler’s Last Year” (2015), “Sciences Nazies: la race, le sol, et la sang” (2019) and “La Case du Siecle” (2011-2014).