BlacKKKlansman is a modern day masterpiece that shows you just how much things haven’t changed in the US between the 70s and now. There is so much to unpack in this film it’s crazy. Subtle Donald Trump references, incredible acting, and just how relevant the past is to the present. Spike Lee has truly created his greatest film. He’s always been an amazing director, but this was beyond wonderful. The writing, the overall essence of the film, this movie was really something for black people, but in this climate, it’s something everyone should make time for.
We know the story, officer Ron Stallworth played by John David Washington is trying to infiltrate the KKK. The KKK has just created a chapter in Colorado Springs and he has a hunch they’re up to no good. He joins the intelligence team in his department but first he’s sent to spy on Stokley Carmichael aka Kwame Turre played by Corey Hawkins (Straight Outta Compton) and falls for Patrice Dumas played by Laura Harrier (Spider-Man: Homecoming). Once he shows that the black people are peaceful, he turns his eyes to the infamous white hoods. Stallworth and his team must go undercover to stop the KKK from doing something horrible.
The film deep dives into a rhetoric we’ve been hearing since Hitler began the Holocaust. The pure white Aryan race is being erased. These have been the words behind some of the biggest atrocities known to man. The thing is, even in the modern day, we still have people that believe this. We still have white supremacists that believe they’re being erased. The push for equal rights by women, African-Americans and the LGBT community have been cited as reasons they believe this. There are many problems with this rhetoric because if we pull out history books and statistics they’d tell us a different story.
The acting in the film was incredible. I felt Stallworth’s confusion at the beginning of the film, but I love the way he transformed as the film progressed. I think Adam Driver as Flip Zimmerman was amazing as well. The film touched on how some Jewish-American people have to fight within themselves to accept who they are. The Holocaust was thirty years prior to the 70s, but since they didn’t experience it… Some Jewish kids didn’t understand the hate they were getting. Especially the ones who weren’t raised Jewish but knew they were. That’s where flips problem lies. The film shows him progress thoroughly as well.
Topher Grace played an amazing David Duke and the supporting cast also did awesome. Laura Harrier played her part well and proved that she could move through roles. She just played a bi-racial high school student and now she’s playing a black student activist, that’s some amazing range and it’s appreciated. Jasper Pääkkönen, Ryan Egghold, and Paul Walter Hauser were great KKK members. Pääkkönen plays Felix Kedrickson, a maniac who wants to go back to the old Klan days where they terrorized black people and murdered them in cold blood. Egghold plays Walter Breacher, who wants to change the way the Klan handles things. Hauser plays Ivanhoe, a man who can’t read but he makes everybody else feel smarter.
The Donald Trump references were very subtle, but they were meaningful. Especially when you see the montage of what happened in Charlottesville, Virginia last year resulting in the death of activist Heather Heyer. The montage also shows David Duke (yes, he’s real and he’s still filled with hatred in his old age). Duke has been trying to get “back to the way things were” for sometime and if you need a history lesson, Google is your friend. It’s powerful to see how Duke speaks of this present day era in the 70s. Then, there’s the scene featuring Harry Belafonte as Jerome Turner. The scene is powerful and tells a horrible event of the past. The film ties together America’s past with it’s present and shows how horrible things in this country are for People of Color. Nia Wilson, Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis weren’t victims of police, they were victims of citizens among many more. These stories are tragic. Hopefully we as a country can progress from this and learn to work together as humans.
Overall, this film was amazing. It touched me and moved me emotionally. The film falls flat in a few places, but the tone never changes. We see videos of racism everyday. We see these things all the time, it’s truly time for a change in America. We can’t better our future if we don’t discuss our past. Thank you Spike Lee and Jordan Peele. We as a country, needed this film. Tweet us @SuperBroMovies and share your thoughts!
Blackkklansman hits theaters August 10.
From visionary filmmaker Spike Lee comes the incredible true story of an American hero. It’s the early 1970s, and Ron Stallworth (John David Washington) is the first African-American detective to serve in the Colorado Springs Police Department. Determined to make a name for himself, Stallworth bravely sets out on a dangerous mission: infiltrate and expose the Ku Klux Klan. The young detective soon recruits a more seasoned colleague, Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver), into the undercover investigation of a lifetime. Together, they team up to take down the extremist hate group as the organization aims to sanitize its violent rhetoric to appeal to the mainstream. Produced by the team behind the Academy-Award® winning Get Out.