One Night In Miami Review

One Night In Miami Review

Naomi Tijerina, Entertainment Editor

One Night In Miami is an Academy Award Winning movie directed by Regina King and is available on Amazon Prime. It is the story of a night when four extremely influential people came together in Miami. The group of men, Cassius Clay, Sam Cooke, Malcolm X, and Jim Brown, each one of them being iconic figures in our history. 

In the story the four characters discuss many topics in their lives, religion being one of the main subjects. Malcolm X was Muslim and Cassius Clay had been learning to be Muslim from him. Cassius Clay’s conversion to Muhammed Ali is one of the main topics of the quartet’s discussion. Clay had the guidance of Malcolm X with this change in his life. During this night the four men had together, they were interrupted by reporters wanting to speak to Cassius about his victory and religion.


“Reporter: Cassius, is it fair to assume that, since Malcolm X is standing here with you, that you’re seriously considering becoming a Muslim? 

Cassius Clay: I’m not considering anything. I am a Muslim. And from this day forward, I no longer want to be called by the name Cassius Clay.” 


They discussed so many topics including the use of their platforms to speak about segregation (Jim Crow Laws era). Malcolm X brings this up to Sam Cooke, speaking about how he sings just to please white people. They also speak about how Sam Cooke just seemed to accept the fact that there were two different charts for top songs.


“Sam Cooke: I may not dance around a stage like Jackie or James Brown, but that’s not what I’m selling, all right? I’m selling my voice, my words, my image… my-my message. MALCOLM: Your message? Hmm. The problem is, at the Copa, you have to sell that message to a bunch of white folks. Sam Cooke: That don’t matter. They got souls, don’t they? And every living thing with a soul can have that soul tapped into. I thought you’d know that. Malcolm X: Do you think, just maybe, your energy’s misdirected, Sam, trying to tap into white people’s souls? Sam Cooke: No, I don’t. If I win them over, playing our music, I’m-I’m knocking down doors for everybody. You watch and see. It’s not gonna always be the pop charts over here, Black music charts over there. One day, it’s gonna be one chart… Malcolm X: Mm. Sam Cooke: …with one music, for all people. Malcolm X: What kind of message are you sending, though, by doing one show for white folks and a completely different show for Black folks, Sam? (scoffs) You… N-No, listen to me. You’re performing in-in places where the only Black people not onstage are the ones serving the food.”

This whole conversation between the two men is intriguing. They both seem convinced that their opinions about Sam are correct. Malcolm X believes that Sam is not truly being himself at every performance seemingly switching his shows depending on who his audience is. Sam Cooke believes that this phase that the world seems to be in is just the beginning of the change that they both want to come. He speaks about the charts and how his goal is for there to be only one chart for all races instead of the segregated ones that they have to deal with now.

Overall, the movie was pretty great, I learned about important events in 1964 and before that time that I had never thought about or even knew existed. Including, the fact that there were two separate charts for singers. I encourage everyone to watch this movie and learn something new, something important in our history.