Watching this in a totally white audience was an experience. The little titters and nudges when 'make america great again' was mentioned, or about police officers shooting unarmed black people, or even one becoming president; to the we won mentality at the final phone call.Then the deathly silence with the current footage being shown. I think quite a few people realised it's not just references.These people still exist today.They still have their rallies.They still have their marches.They still murder in uniform.And they still hold these abhorrent views.
I think I even heard some people sniff away some tears right at the end once they saw the footage and heard the words of people who were there.
Enjoy the film; enjoy the jokes (it is a funny film) but make no doubt the characters shown still exist.
BlacKkKlansman is an undercover film, because beneath its brilliant sheet of light-hearted biopic lurks a dark satire of racism, all lives matter and Trumpism. It will sneak up on you with its dated 70's feel and then grab you with its arresting pertinence to contemporary issues. Watch this film or be doomed to repeat it.
BlacKkKlansman is so good that I forgot it was a Spike Lee film. More seriously, it even outshines 2006's Inside Man and the closing newsreel sequence literally had me sobbing in the cinema (my over-the-top emotional responses are just one of the many reasons I always sit in the front row). Not only one of the best films of the year, this is clearly the most important film of the year.
Power to the people. All the people. All over... everywhere!!!
I was expecting a lot more comedy, from what I had seen. While there were some good moments, that made me laugh, the film overall was a little slow. I was expecting more cunning and comedy, that both the plot and poster lead on: a black man infiltrating a white supremacist group... Sounds very interesting and hooked me in, however, that's not really what it's about. More like manipulating, not infiltrating.
Adam Driver did an excellent job as always. Nothing spectacular or noteworthy about this film, and I actually liked Imperium better, for an undercover-white-supremacist film. This film felt oddly more political, but perhaps that was the point.
This is an incredible film. Not only is it a thoroughly entertaining film, it also comes with some hard-hitting messages. With the film taking place in the 1970's, I loved how it was able to tie a lot of things to present day, and make some slight jokes along the way as well.
I believe it's probably Spike Lee's best movie in years. Although the movie may be a bit long for some at 2 hrs 15 min, I was not bored for one moment. I highly recommend it.
It simply isn't a good movie.
Yes, the issues still exist today - and if you replace black with muslim: They exist in the entire western hemisphere (Ironically creating more muslim extremists).
Great message, but in my oppinion (Seeing from other reviews I'm pretty alone in this) bad delivery.
I even had to watch it twice, since I fell asleep after an hour the first time.
sorry didnt like this at all this was a total letdown on so many levels and i did expect better than this ugh
fukn liberal bullshit,funny as it was all democrats in the KKK!
The plot is very interesting and it's hard to believe this is based off a true story. It can be funny at times while not taking away from the story or the serious issues it handles. The last few minutes of this movie are powerful. This is long but is paced well and flows. The cinematography and editing were great. There were some really cool shots. John David Washington and Adam Driver are both fantastic. And shoutout to Topher Grace who does a good job playing a terrible person. I haven't seen many Spike Lee "joints" but this makes me want to see more of his movies.
[9.0/10] It was hard for me not to think of The Departed while watching BlacKkKlansman. While Spike Lee takes a much different tack with his “man undercover” movie than Martin Scorsese did with his, both films plop their protagonists in a double life, one where they have to feign loyalty to one group and preserve it for another, and plays in the tension and cognitive dissonance that this sort of forced split personality creates.
But BlacKkKlansman goes further on that front than The Departed did. It tells the story of Ron Stallworth, a black police officer in Colorado Springs in the 1970s who, with the help of a fellow agent to do the body work and some phone line trickery, manages to infiltrate the Klu Klux Klan. Lee uses that premise to magnify the duality of his protagonist exponentially.
In Lee’s telling, Stallworth isn’t just a cop on the one hand, and a faux-member of a hate group at odds with them on the other. He creates a fictionalized persona for himself that he shares with another person, to where “Ron Stallworth” is, at once, a virulent but fictional white supremacist, a Jewish man who provide a physical presence, and a Black man who gives “Ron” his voice. And at the same time, the film establishes the real Ron as an outsider at the police station given the color of his skin, and an outsider in the black community given his affiliation with the cops.
As much as BlacKkKlansman is a film about the pathetic but persistent and pernicious nature of hate groups, as much as it succeeds in following the tension and catharsis of a police investigation that is fraught on multiple levels, it is first and foremost about identity: how it’s forged, how it can be forced upon you, and how much it is both informed by but also immutable within different contexts. Ron Stallworth is a black man, a cop, a colleague, a lover, an informant, an ally, and a card-carrying member of the KKK. This film is devoted to teasing out the threads of those different facets of his identity, and then tying them in knots.
And yet it works on each of these levels. It’s hard to miss when Lee intends the film as an object lesson on the cockroach-like qualities of the Klan and its brand of hate. He makes the movie’s resonance to current events all but explicit, and tempers his moments of victory over them with examples of how deep their hatred runs, how hard-if-not-impossible to stamp out that hatred is, and how little will there is at the top to do what it would take to accomplish that. Throughout the runtime, Lee peppers the audience with details about the KKK’s ideology fermenting in dark bars and family basements, the tendrils the group has wrapped around the hearts and minds of its members who hide in plain sight, and the efforts by those in charge to make their message palatable and dress it up as something more respectable to larger swaths of the public.
But at the same time, if you somehow missed all those ideas which barely qualify as subtext, BlacKkKlansman works just as well as a nuts and bolts undercover cop story. The pacing of the film is nigh-perfect, as Lee and company spoon out close calls and tense moments of increasing intensity with just the right rhythm. Stallworth and his partner come closer and closer to exposing the threat posed by the local Klan chapter, at the same time worst of the KKK’s hardliners come closer and closer to making that threat into a real life tragedy. The way Lee, as both writer and director, puts “Ron Stallworth” deeper into the machinations of the Klan at the same time the risks of exposure and harm are ratcheted up is near-perfect.
Still, apart from its social commentary, and its undercover cop flick bona fides, BlacKkKlansman serves as a meditation on what it means to carry a variety of different labels in modern American life, and how much our recognition of and willingness to own those labels comes when we’re confronted with them. No scene makes that point better than when Stallworth’s partner, Flip Zimmerman, reflects on the threats, implicit and explicit, he faced when going undercover as “Ron” given his semitic visage. He recognizes his privilege, how he could choose not to engage with his Jewish heritage because he didn’t want to and, more importantly, didn’t have to, until suddenly it created a mortal threat for him. Suddenly that slice of his identity takes up more room in his brain, becomes unavoidable, when it marks him not only as “the other” but puts him in the sort of danger the real Stallworth has to face everyday and can’t eschew so easily.
Still, as much as Lee wants to interrogate how much risk and differences expose those parts of our identities, he’s also very sly about drawing out the similarities between unlikely groups. He juxtaposes the rapt attention and cries of a group of black activists hearing a tale of horror recounted by their elder with the same stilled admiration and virulent chat of the local Klan listening to their leader. He mirrors the disdain and suspicion, in a way that neither humanizes the Klan or demonizes the activists, but rather spotlights the irony of these moments, and makes both known and recognizable rather than distant and abstract.
The cuts between the two groups are part and parcel with Lee’s mastery of the cinematic form in BlacKkKlansman. With a speech from a visiting luminary to the local young activists, Lee manages to capture the stirring power of the speaker’s call to action, the impressionistic signs of admiration by an audience inspired by the words, and the pull and resistance within an undercover Ron Stallworth, trying both to do his job and honor his community in a position that makes it hard to do either.
That’s what pushes this film ahead of The Departed in my book. Lee uses all his abilities to put Stallworth in a hall of mirrors, where he’s forced to face a myriad of different reflections of himself. Some are familiar, hopeful even. Some are haunting and inescapable. And others are barely recognizable, twisted and bent out of shape, But all of them are him in some way, and Lee never flinches from the internal conflict those different identities -- some chosen, some forced, some invented -- create for his star. Beyond cop or outlaw, beyond rich or poor, BlacKkKlansman dives into the different dimensions that brand us, buoy us, and define us in modern America, and ties and tears at them until it’s clear which can be changed and modulated and which are unalterable and inviolable, and for whom.
This is a good movie. It is important to throw a spotlight on our cultural flaws and ingrained pre-judgements of each other. Otherwise. how will we overcome them? It is a good story, incredible in its root in reality. The cast and their performances were good (with the exception of Topher Grace who was horribly miscast). It had some unexpected treasures, like Harry Belafonte as Jerome Turner who mesmerized us with his testimony of brutality. I give this film a 7 (good) out of 10. Does its subject matter alone elevate it to Best Picture (it is nominated in 5 other categories for Oscars, as well)? I'm not sure. MINI RANT - In an age when popular understanding of history is based on the movies people see, I think it is important to point out that if a movie says it is based on actual events, as when a movie says it is based on a book, there is a lot of artistic license taken to shift details around and changes made to make it a good movie, even to the extent that the film is more fiction than fact. I'll give you just three examples from this film, it is based on the 2014 memoir BLACK KLANSMAN by Ron Stallman. The writers moved the story back seven years (1979 to 1972) to facilitate a reference to a number of blaxploitation films. David Duke didn't find out that Stallworth was black until 2006 (27 years later) when called upon by a reporter to comment on these events. The detective who is characterized as Flip Zimmerman was not Jewish, that is a total contrivance of the film. Two other Oscar nominated films, also saying they were based on actual events, THE FAVORITE and MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS, are really fiction far from fact. Beware fiction masquerading as fact! END MINI RANT. Fun Fact: Stallman still carries his KKK membership in his wallet. [Crime Drama]
Wow, the movie was funny, captivating, and beautifully shot. The ending blew my mind. Never forget Charlottesville, and never forget the black sisters who built the Black Panthers. The women were the main organizers and members of the organization. Don't you ever forget it. The movie would've gotten 10/10 if it hadn't been cop propaganda (ACAB) and if the Jewish character would've been played by a Jew for once, and not just a white man with a big nose. Anyways, great movie!
The conversation around this film inevitably ends up at the closing few minuets. to get it out of the way I think the way this film wraps up was certainly a bold choice on Lee’s part that helps ground he movie in today’s political climate and draws parallels between the struggles of the of the 70′s and the struggles of today. This will alienate a lot of potential audience members but it is a Spike Lee film so you should know what you are in for.
The film proceeding the controversial short documentary is actually one of the most entertaining films I have seen all year and certainly isn’t shy about tackling political and social issues head on. At times it can be tough to believe that this is a completely true story as the screenplay elegantly glides from one insane encounter to the next without ever flinching. As far as I can tell with my limited research this is a largely accurate retelling of the story and if that is the case then screenwriters Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott and director Spike Lee landed on a perfect story for Lee’s unique style. The influence of black cinema from the 70′s is felt everywhere from the cinematography to the music gives the film a feeling of cool that not many modern films pull of.
If BlacKkKlansman is not up for at least one acting Oscar then I might just have to give up on trying to predict Oscar nominees. Adam Driver is the best he has ever been in a non Star Wars project, Topher Grace delivers an unsettlingly charming and perfectly threatening performance as Grand Wizard David Duke and John David Washington breaks out of his father’s shadow within seconds of screen time.
BlacKkKlansman is absolutely going to rank high on my best of the year list this year! this is a film that has to be seen.
Everything about the movie is great except for the cheesy music/soundtrack. They use just one track throughout the whole movie, and it becomes very obvious when they alter it's tempo (slowing it down) to try and fit drastically different types of scenes and moods. But other than that, it's a great movie.
Highly entertaining flic, even if the heavy handed message felt like it was sponsored by Hilary Clinton and her comrades.
Ebony aaaand iiiiiii-vo-ryyyyy...undercover in per-fect har-mo-nyyyy...side by side on the force, oh Lord..why don't weeeeeeee?!!!
I know the film is based off a true story, i would have liked to see more action, more twist and turns, but whatever. It was alright.
If the film had a bigger budget, then it could been a lot better. But Spike Lee did an excellent job with the budget given.
An entertainingly cathartic movie, but one with much resonance and power. A small triumph, not only for the cinema, but for #BlackLives Matter too.
2 / 2 directing & technical aspect1 / 1 story1 / 1 act I1 / 1 act II1 / 1 act III1 / 1 acting1 / 1 writing.5 / 1 originality0 / 1 stays with you
0 / 1 misc
8.5 out of 10
This film is powerful in it's message, and scarily prophetic.Washington acted fantastically in this.Had some good humour and tension throughout.However the pacing is inconsistent.
Quite a good movie. Gets real real right at the end, though. Maybe too real.They lent quite heavy on the modern rhetoric of racists which was not how they talked at the time (eg "America First" wasn't really a phrase used much back then). I understand why they did that though, makes it all feel more familiar.Definitely worth a watch.
A sobering look at racism in America, entertaining and thought-provoking. The director of Do the Right Thing at his best!
Weak... I was expecting some comedy and action... Instead I got baited into a liberal shit trying to make a terrorist organization look bether than the KKK... both were shit, we all know that... come on... please, I just want to enjoy good movies again...
Spike Lee is back in action with sharp claws suppprted by an outstanding cast and performances by Adam Driver and John David Washington.
One of the most easily enjoyable Spike Lee movies. This isn't as gritty and dark as Bamboozled though it goes borrow a lot from it. There are a multitude of reasons why I've had this waiting to be watched mostly because I'm never sure if I wanted to have to watch yet another movie with so much racism but this was much more palatable than a typical period piece. The comedy isn't over the top as it shouldn't be. The racist characters did their job without chewing up the scene the way I expected with all the talk about Toby McGuire's David Duke (and seeing Duke at the end of the movie. I can see now that Toby does make a decent fit).
Narratively this is everything the trailer promised it would be. A black cop signs up for the Klan and when he needs to meet in person a white Jewish cop pretends to be him. One of the big things that arise in that situation is that they don't sound the same. But even though phones were much more clear in the 70s it's both understandable and laughable that this doesn't really come up. They infiltrate and try to stall out Klan activities and keep getting accepted deeper and deeper into the heirarchy.
What little I've heard in terms of reviews have focused on the ending which if you've seen Bamboozled you can prepare yourself for. A lot of people call it ham-fisted. I'll agree it's not subtle. Some will say it was unecessary and I'll disagree. I think that ending footage is what will elevate the movie out of it's time. It seems cheesy and overdone now but in 10 or even 5 years from now that's the sort of thing that will have more punch. I grew up watching Merry Melodies and all those classic cartoons and seeing them at the end of Bamboozled was the talk of the movie for me and my friends when we walked out of the theatre. America is a country under white power and white power is something that always finds a way to suggest racism presented as bad as it was is disingenuous. "It was bad but not as bad as all that" and while it's not a perfectly encapsulated here as it was in Bamboozled the end scene does serve the purpose of showing viewers laters on that yes, it was as bad as we said it was.
Good movie about an unbelievable story. Movie keeps you engaged with a very interesting subject matter.
Great acting, powerful and timely. Would have liked to see a little more action/suspance though.
Alissa Wilkinson is the name of the author who writted this critic in the Vox’s plataform. To beggin with it , I should say that I do agree with her in some points and that I hold a whole bunch of different point of views on the other side.Well, we, the brazillians share among ourselfs a very solid ideia that there is a certain white supremacist group in America like the KKK and the neo-Nazis, and of curse there is, but sometimes, from what it is passed from the Hollywood’s movies which are very present in our “brazillian way of life”, it seems that this disgusting group occupies about 10 to 30 % of the north –american population, and we know that it’s very above it. This movie criticizes the Trump’s polices to the US government as everyone who hold his opinion was a self-underscovered member of the Ku Klux Klan, and that’s absolutely wrong, we in Brazil suffer the same ideological fallacy, “if you’re not with us you’re supposed to be an ugly and terrifieng nazi who should be removed from society” they say. Of curse I agree with them that mostly of the racist America loves Trump for its “simple and careless purposes to his country”, I am trying to express liberalism with a leftiest mentality, but I do think that it’s a historical mark from the pass in which the mostly of the southern states were all stateless policies friendly . Moreover, I agree with her that , unfortunately, there is still racism and prejudice marks in US and brazillian “democratic institutions”, and, to my simple way of viewing the world, it’s proportionated by the defaults of the general reforms in Brazil and United States politics which were uncapable of dismantling past hatred-baseated policies.
At last, I really enjoyed the movie, the best that I have seen in this recent time for sure. I will try to bring more commentaries in the next time, but from now it’s all.
Good underline jokes, and some beneath lines of the moment. Nothing new, black vs white and KKK. Not an drama, is history and present arguments.
This is a great and interesting story, I mean it's like that Chappelle Show sketch! A black Klansman! Well I'll be! And it's a true story of how Detective Ron Stallworth infiltrated the KKK over the phone and even had long discussions with infamous Grand Wizard David Duke. Unfortunately it isn't a great movie, but it does have it's moments. I haven't done the full dive to compare the actual real life events and the stuff made up by Hollywood to make it into a movie but right off the bat it is apparent that the romantic subplot between Ron and student activist Patrice is completely fabricated. It never feels real and even starts but him just walking up to her with no game and just being instantly liked. I understand that this character is here to represent Ron's inner struggle as a black man trying to solve problems from the inside. Being the first black police man on the Colorado Springs force and seeing how the system is designed to keep people like him down but still having a belief that it can work, there is a lot to mine there. In my opinion it isn't handled that well and neither is this bomb subplot that is also completely fabricated. I suppose it works for a movie or what you think a movie should have in it to go through the motions. I also understand that the movie wants to make the Klansman look like fools, and it should, but the movie goes so far into making them toothless fools that you start to wonder if the Klan is really a threat at all. Besides these structural issues there really are some great moments and sequences, especially when they intercut Harry Belafonte telling the story of Jesse Washington being publicly lynched in 1916 with Klansman hooting and hollering while watching "The Birth Of A Nation". I'm not completely sure that the montage at the end of Charlottesville works for the movie but it is powerful stuff. It seems to be there as the movie kind of ends with Ron and the gang in a happy place and hopeful that things can be changed, but a stark reminder that there is still a ways to go.
It's a shame that a movie has to be brought down by the shameless (?) use of footage before the credits to make a political point that has been all to clear from the start of the film. I didn't check to see Spike Lee made this movie but in retrospect I should have guessed and seen his style (the rally at the start being the first indication).I enjoyed the humour in it -even though there was not much of it- I enjoyed the actors (except that guy from Blacklist - RIP Tom Keane!) but I wouldn't call this the best movie of the year. I cheered at the end when they "pranked" David Duke but then all of a sudden I get Charlottesville shoved down my throat and the car that ran over people there (people on our continent got run over too by cars and trucks... That's hate too) making the whole thing a bit sour mainly, and purely cause of the political agenda they're pulling.
There are plenty of better movies out there that tackle the problems with racism... (Mississipi Burning, Amistad, Roots, Gran Torino, Glory, Get Out,... to name a few) and they do so without being too on the nose.
In the infamous words of senator Clay Davis (who seems to cameo in this movie): "Shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit."
BEST MOVIE I'VE SEEN IN 2018!
It´s funny cause it´s true. and then it´s not funny anymore.this movie is based on the pasted, but it could very well be a documentary of "trumpism" in this era and his voters / supporters . the only difference is that in the past they weren't so "polite" in the words, but the message is still the same. welcome back 30´s and 40´s. we sure didn´t miss you ( well at least the good people that still remain didnt , but i gotta say we defeat you once, we shall prevail again ). Take this movie has a warning that the KKK is very much alive, but now they don´t wear white capes; they wear ties. and they go to Trump´s rallies.
8/10 for the wake up call.
Thank you, Spike Lee... for not being afraid to give it to us. I'm sure plenty of people will be offended by the language, yet Spike doesn't shy away from it. Sadly, when Quentin Tarantino does something similar (think Django), people immediately want to discredit him for the harsh language used. The movie is certainly deeper than my quick commentary gives it credit for. I definitely recommend this movie (for those that can handle it), as Spike does as only Spike can do.
It's a poignant, relevant take on America then and now, as well as being hugely anti Trump. The end segment is quite moving. But as a crime comedy thriller, it's not anything special.
One of Spike Lee's best in a long time. Tells an engaging true life story, that draws some disturbing parallels with the modern day. He peppers a few showy, cringeworthy director flairs throughout, but it's not enough to bring the movie down. Especially with an ending that's soo unexpected and haunting.
This film is quite simply spectacular. While the title reveals the main conflict Spike Lee has managed to create a film that has many layers that left me thinking about it for days. While the events happened decades ago the struggle and the themes very mirror what is going on today in modern America.
Also, while I've seen several of his movies for the first time I see Adam Driver as a true-blue lead in Hollywood.
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Solid flick. Definitely worth a watch. rent it on Redbox and decide to buy it after.
This movie brought some ambiguous feelings to the surface. All along the whole story I got an absolutely absurd satire which really unbelievable to think about it was based on true events. Then, in the final frames I was torn apart with those images and I was totally lost how to categorize this movie and which part has the greater impact on me after I stand up from the cinema chair. I'm certain only one thing which is Spike Lee never failed me once I always gained something from each movie of his I have watched so far.
Its crazy to believe that this movie was inspired by real events. Of course, they probably took some liberties, but still, its amazing to believe that something resembling this film happened in real life. Even though its set decades ago, it feels very current & has a particularly strong end to the film that makes you really think about where weve come from & where were going to in the future. I haven`t seen many Spike Lee movies, but I was impressed with his direction & I thought the cast was really good, particularly John David Washington (son of Denzel) & Adam Driver. Definitely one to check out.
ve come from & where we
I was glad to see Spike Lee make a comeback and he did the storyline justice. BlacKkklansmans is based on true events. Spike has modernize the movie while keeping it in a 70’s era. The storyline touches on racism, equality, ignorance, and truths.
The question is what truths and knowledge will you derive from watching this thought provoking cinematic feature.
Spike Lee at his best