BlacKkKlansman ★★★★

Spike Lee has never been a filmmaker to shrink into the background. His films are always rooted in the contemporary issues of the day, marinated in anger and vitriol at the injustices and institutional rascism prevalent in the United States specifically, though it’s a worldwide issue. BlacKKKlansman, though set in the past, is very much about the political climate of today, and specifically America under Donald Trump. Lee isn’t exactly subtle about these comparisons but nor should he be. The film combines horror and comedy really astutely, the rascists in this film are portrayed as buffoonish figures of fun that we can laugh at but also we would be foolish to misunderstand or underestimate the danger they pose, as evidenced by the real life footage that plays over the end credits. John David (son of Denzel) Washington is incredible in the lead role, as is Adam Driver and Topher Grace. The film is an uncomfortable watch, especially hearing the repugnant language used against black people, but it’s never a slog; Lee shoots with such vitality and verve and style. There are moments where it’s funny, moments where it’s cool but your never too far from horror or a moment of hate that will make you feel physically sick. It would be nice to say that we’ve come a long way since the time period depicted in this film, but it appears we’re closer to it than ever.

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