BLACKKLANSMAN, an astonishing comeback for Spike Lee, brings the audience a true story based on real events that transpired in the late 70s. The narrative tells the story about the riskiest investigation in American history where a black man (John David Washington) works as an undercover detective with his fellow police officer Flip Zimmerman (Adam Driver) to investigate the Ku Klux Klan together and highlight America’s racist history and present issues with its African American community.
The film starts its pace off on a sharp note with a cameo of Alec Baldwin playing a white supremacist who endorses violence and cruelty against the African American community. While this behaviour was approved of in the past, recent events such as the Charlottesville attack are shown in the film to compare how little has changed in America with regards to the racist values promoted in the American culture. This being the bases of the film, Lee’s determination to exhibit such behaviour is crystal clear throughout many sequences. Thisis illustrated by the highly amplified speech given by an afro-activist who speaks against the American society and Hollywood’s practices against black people.
Lee’s ironic concept of the investigation, combined with nauseatingly racist dialogue, provokes significant perceptions in the audience. The reason these perceptions are highlighted is to make evident the horrific practices supported by many people in America today. Some punchy dialogue created with wit and humour gives the audiences the taste of some funny clashes between the white and black characters. When conversing with the red necks known as the KKKs, Ron changes his tone and speaks to them in a way which seems to mimic the white supremacists.
Driver’s character functions quite well with Washington’s as both are required to work quite closely and carefully during this investigation, creating a bond amongst the two, and the disclosure of Flip’s Jewish roots makes the investigation somewhat personal to him, placing his character in an unexpected situation which leads him to reconsider his personal views as a Jewish man living in the radicalised American society in the 70s. The main issue is kept consistent throughout the film, and Lee makes some honest and striking points of the American society he resides in.