Spike Lee returns with one of his blazing best, out now on DVD and Blu-ray.
film extras OUT NOW DVD, BD, 4K, Digital HD EXTRAS Featurette
The true story of a black police officer who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan in the ’70s is the basis for Spike Lee’s most electrifying film in years. A stylish and pacy hybrid of cop thriller and satirical comedy, BlacKkKlansman might have a period setting, but Lee uses it to address problems of today, including far-right views and police brutality.
John David Washington (son of Denzel) makes for a charismatic lead
as Ron Stallworth, the Colorado Springs cop who calls in answer to a KKK recruitment ad, and sends his Jewish partner Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver) in his place for in-person meets. Cue sweaty-palmed wire-wearing, lie detector tests and shifty exchanges.
Stallworth’s undercover activity is further complicated by his relationship with student union president Patrice (Laura Harrier), who despises “pigs”. And Topher Grace deserves special mention for his terrific turn as the KKK’s ‘grand wizard’ David Duke, whose aim is “for America to achieve… its greatness again”.
Despite the heightened style – with smokey blaxploitation-esque visuals and a wailing guitar score – the general mood is one of discomfort at the undercover antics and the abhorrent views on display. The film’s adherence to the facts of the case has been questioned, but that’s forgivable when Lee lands so many relevant and timely punches, not least a powerhouse epilogue that really hammers the point home. Shame that the true story and themes aren’t explored in more depth by the scant extras. Matt Maytum