BlacKkKlansman ★★★★

Probably Lee's most accessible work, which unfortunately will allow this film to jump into mainstream discussions where mindless platitudes such as "this is the film we need right now" and "this is a movie for Trump's America" will drive me and many others off the wall in the coming months. At the same time though, despite Lee sacrificing some of his expressive filmmaking and formal energy, he manages to craft the rare narrative which coalesces into something that is deceptively satisfying, and rather thought-provokingly ambiguous. It's hard for me to think that the final act of the narrative is anything but bordering on satirical fantasy, especially when it's immediately followed up by the Charlottesville footage. Everything for the Stallworth character wraps up almost too cleanly, as if it's some wishful fantasy that he thinks he's actually making some impact. And of course this is as angry as any of Lee's works, with maybe my favorite thematic thread being the power of cinema as a political tool (the co-opting of The Birth of a Nation and Gone with the Wind, Alec Baldwin's faux-documentary, the brief discussion on blaxploitation).

"Spike Lee is back baby!"
He never left.

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