“BLACKkKLANSMAN”—movie review   1 comment

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With the exception of two of his movies I am not a fan of Spike Lee or his persona but there is not getting away from it that BLACKkKLANSMAN is a superior movie and should be seen.
The first half of the movie is sort of a roller coaster ride hitting on many subjects with humor and insight but it isn’t til the latter part of the move that it becomes epic and shows wit, passion, satire, tension and relevance to the past and present. Written by Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, David Wilmont and Spike Lee the film opens with a film being made by Alec Baldwin playing a man who is giving a KKK speech and is followed with the panoramic crane shot from “Gone With The Wind” where Scarlett O’Hara is walking through a filed of hundreds of wounded and dying Confederate soldiers. There are other references to the film regarding Hattie McDonald and Butterfly McQueen but the movie references are mainly D.W. Griffith’s “The Birth of a Nation” made in 1915 that was mainly pro KKK and anti Black.
The film is based on the book by Ron Stallworth, the true story of his becoming the “Jackie Robinson” of the Colorado Springs police department, the first African-American to join the department. He will eventually goes undercover, passing as white via telephone, in the local KKK and soon talking to David Duke, their Grand Wizard. The next step is to have white, Jewish detective Flip Zimmerman be Ron at meetings he is invited to attend.
From that point on practically every group of people from Blacks to White Christian Americas to Gays to Jews, Policemen, ‘Pigs”, among others, with all the negative and positive words, sayings associated with each. It is here where the script, and Lee, go helter-skelter with words, music, fashions, ideas and portraying various people who were involved for and against the KKK. Though the mid-section is scattered all over it is easy enough to follow and gives you the time to hear the ideas and arguments.
It is at this point that Harry Belafonte appears on screen and starts talking to a group of Black Student Union members and about the 1916 lynching of Jesse Washington in Texas with inter-cutting scenes of David Duke giving a speech about ‘white men’ that you forget to breath until the final shot before the credits appear.
This past weekend was the anniversary of the white supremacists march and violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Spike Lee drives home what has happened since then.
The cast from John David Washington as Ron, Adam Driver as his partner, Laura Harrier as a local collage activist leader, Topher Grace as David Duke, Corey Hawkins as Carmichael aka Kwame Ture then, Robert John Burke as the police chief, along with strong actors as part of the squad or the KKK. Last but not least there is the face of Harry Belafonte who was a symbol to many of the Black people fighting for equality and dignity.
“BLACKkKLANSMAN” is a film with laughs, horror, truth, being clear and confused within the same frame, heroics, pain, moving and a major accomplishment in the career of Spike Lee.

Movie trailer

BLACKkKLANSMAN Trailer (2018)


One response to ““BLACKkKLANSMAN”—movie review

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  1. I’ve heard good things about this. Glad to hear it’s powerful stuff….

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