‘The Ride’ Movie Starring Ludacris Faces Backlash Over White Supremacist Storyline

The film’s tagline is “You Can’t Soar Until Someone Lifts You Up.”

Chris “Ludacris” Bridges (2 Fast 2 Furious, Crash) plays Eldridge Buultjens in the film The Ride which is inspired by the real-life story of extreme sports star John Buultjens. Eldridge is a Black man in an interracial couple that takes in a foster son with a white supremacist upbringing.

A description for the movie reads, in part:

Eldridge makes it his mission to overcome the challenges of John’s white supremacist upbringing and slowly begins to forge a relationship through his foster son’s fascination with extreme sports by giving John his first bike. Rooted by this newfound passion, the family builds a bond of mutual respect, love and together they speed toward BMX glory and ultimately, redemption.

Systemic racism became a major conversation in the United States over the summer following the police killing of George Floyd, a Black man who died after then-Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds. Black Lives Matter protests broke out across the world in response to Floyd’s death.

With that context, the plot of The Ride did not sit well with some social media users. The Alex Ranarivelo-directed motion picture was accused of presenting the perpetrators of racism as the victims and placing the burden of ending white supremacy on the backs of African Americans rather than Caucasians.

Besides Ludacris, the cast of The Ride includes Shane Graham as John McCord, Sasha Alexander as Marianna Buultjens, Blake Sheldon as Rory McCord, and Alexander Davis as young John McCord. The Ride is scheduled to be available for viewing on November 13 via Amazon’s Prime Video.