Black com­edy with a white twist makes right call

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - MORE FILM -

Sorry To Bother You

Back in the sum­mer, Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlans­man told the ex­tra­or­di­nary but ap­par­ently true story of a black Colorado po­lice of­fi­cer who man­aged to in­fil­trate the lo­cal chap­ter of the Ku Klux Klan over the tele­phone be­cause his tele­phone voice sounded white. Now rap­per turned film-maker Boots Ri­ley takes the same idea for his debut fea­ture film, Sorry To Bother You, and de­liv­ers a so­cial com­edy that is satir­i­cal, sur­real and, thank­fully, at times very funny in­deed.

Lakeith Stan­field plays Cas­sius, a young man who lives in a con­verted garage, has a beau­ti­ful artist girl­friend (Tessa Thomp­son) and des­per­ately needs his job in a call cen­tre to work. Which it does, but only af­ter an old hand (Danny Glover) ad­vises him to adopt a white voice when talk­ing to call­ers.

It’s part of the sur­real tone of the film that this white voice isn’t some buffed-up ver­sion of his own but a real white voice (David Cross sup­plies it).

Very soon Cas­sius has be­come a highly paid ‘power caller’ and is rub­bing so­cial shoul­ders with the charis­matic boss of the Worry Free cor­po­ra­tion (Ar­mie Ham­mer), sup­plier of ex­traor­di­nar­ily cheap labour to multi­na­tional com­pa­nies ev­ery­where. But Cas­sius’s suc­cess in­evitably comes at a price, al­beit one you won’t be able to guess in a month of Sun­days. mod­i­fied by his fa­ther (Matthew Mc­Conaughey, with Mer­ritt, be­low) to a lo­cal. They don’t en­tirely trust him but they do like him, and pretty soon White Boy Rick is a blinged-up in­sider… which makes him per­fect when the FBI and Detroit Po­lice Depart­ment come look­ing for an in­former. Hands up any­one who thinks this is go­ing to end hap­pily…

gUn laW: Matthew Mc­Conaughey and Richie Mer­ritt

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Ireland

© PressReader. All rights reserved.