Asking Jaci to sit and watch “An American Girl Story — Melody 1963: Love Has to Win” with me did not require much coercion. First, she is an American Girl doll collector. And, second, we are all big fans of Marsai Martin and the TV show, black-ish. Being able to see Marsai and American Girl come together in this incredible Amazon Studio’s Original Live-Action Special was amazing.
Melody 1963: Love Has to Win
Set in Detroit during the Civil Rights Movement, “An American Girl Story – Melody 1963: Love Has to Win” examines the joyful life and troubled times of an irrepressible 10-year-old African-American girl, Melody (Marsai Martin), whose vivid imagination and creativity reinforce her optimism. When shocking national events, including the 1963 Birmingham Church Bombing, threaten her sense of security, Melody must find inner strength to restore her hope for a better world. She learns that it’s important to “stand up for what’s right, even when it’s hard or scary.”
Jaci was excited to be able to watch the movie based on what she already knew about other American Girl movies, as well as Marsai’s acting abilities. We both knew it was going to be an intriguing story line, but Jaci said she wasn’t prepared to cry. In fact, listening to her talk about the movie afterwards, Jaci was passionate about it’s message. She told stories of her own that related to the scenes we saw played out on the screen and how she could help make a difference. Melody inspired something in Jaci’s young heart that I had never seen. To see a movie move a 10 year old girl the way it motivated my daughter is pretty amazing!
In fact, Melody 1963 opens the door for conversations that still need to happen in homes today. The parallels between racial inequalities is a topic that is still seen in national headlines today. Melody’s mother (Idara Victor) perhaps states it best when she says, “Fear brings out the worst in us, but love brings out the best.” From the issues Melody faces in a predominately white school to the way her mother encourages Melody to “go as far as her dream will take [her],” there is something to be learned from her life. The movie was motivational to watch and educational in its eye-opening display of events that children and adults alike need to be aware of.
“…this country may limit your freedom but it can never limit your mind.”
Did you know there’s more great original programming for kids on Amazon?
Check out this new video from the Amazon Pre-School show, Wishenpoofs: