BlacKkKlansman

BlacKkKlansman ★★★★★

There were times where I swore the characters in this movie were going to look at the audience and stare back at us in disappointment. Spike Lee takes timely, amplifies it by 10 and forces it at us non-stop, and that isn't counting the newsreel and clips at the end. What he has crafted here is arguably the greatest film ever made. I toss that around a little bit sure, but I am genuinely speechless. The man has to be a lock for best director this year.

There is so much to talk about I don't know where to begin.

Spike's direction is absolutely flawless, but two sequences pop out to me. The first is during a rally at the beginning of the movie, where he interchanges between shots of the speaker, and close ups of the audience members. The other is a scene towards the end, that swaps between the student union having a guest speaker talking about what DW Griffith's 'The Birth of a Nation' did to embolden people in the south, while the KKK simultaneously view and cheer on the film.

The writing is typically great. The films ability to alternate between hilariously stupid interactions between the KKK members, and the outrage-inducing dialogue that commentates on racism and how it affects people still today is crazy. I can't believe how well done the screenplay is. And some of the dialogue that is clearly meant to mirror present day issues is placed so well throughout the movie.

On top of that, the cast is all terrific. A lot of praise will go to John David Washington, and for good reason, but man can Adam Driver act. And the decision to cast Topher Grace as David Duke might be the greatest in cinematic history. I truly don't believe that any actors mere presence has made me elicit so many different emotions. At first it's like "lol Eric is the Grand Wizard of the KKK" and then it transitions to "yo, anybody could really be one of those guys". It's unsettling, but still hilarious.

The score and soundtrack are great, and the dancing scene towards the beginning at the bar really were a fun little bit before the movie got a little more serious. That part at the end where they are moving in an almost conveyor belt like fashion was a cool callback to the blaxploitation films the characters were talking about earlier in the film. It was a cool way to show that Ron's work was not yet done.

That feeling of horror I got in my gut as some of the events unfolded, in particular when the cops incorrectly began to arrest Ron instead of the fat white lady, really infuriated me.

And that's the thing, Spike is here to send a message sure, but what I noticed is that he's less inclined to do so by way of the story, but by showing what happens when very stupid people rally around stupid and violent ideals. He exposes the ignorance of the racist ideals, and hammers home the point that racism can be disguised many ways. That's the real reason the Grace casting was so good.

I feel like there's so much more to talk about, but I'm still processing through a lot of it. Spike Lee has created a masterpiece here, that is inarguable.