BlacKkKlansman is a crime drama film, focusing on how police officer Ron Stallworth, (John David Washington), infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan.
This film is riveting on many levels right from the beginning, while the plot and the dialogue also being superb throughout. Furthermore, all the characters featured are complex, this is something to be praised as it could have devolved into a collection of caricatures, but this film avoids that. The arc and emotional journey we see Ron go on is both believable, while also feeling very raw. Ron is a fantastic character and one you root for from the beginning. It is this bond that helps to elevate the tension in the film, as there are sequences where Ron and his partner Flip, (Adam Driver), are in real danger, and you can’t help but worry about them.
The political nature of the film is its greatest strength. The message that screams out throughout is one of, is this the society we want to live in. The film brings you face to face with uncomfortable truths- no apology given. Perhaps best emphasised by the closing montage sequence, which may be one of the pieces of editing all year, during this sequence it is made clear that the issues depicted have not just gone away.
The performances are top rate, with John David Washington and Adam Driver both being outstanding. However, it is not only the main actors who shine, Corey Hawkins’ performance as Kwame Ture is also superb. BlacKkKlansman is a film that proves you can have fully developed, interesting side characters, who can have small roles and a clear narrative significance.
The only minor issue of the film is the amount of time it dedicates to the Ron Patrice relationship subplot, which doesn’t lead anywhere. Both characters are great with Patrice, (Laura Harrier), being outstanding: it is because of how good the characters are that this romance sub-plot almost feels like a disservice.
To conclude this film works so well because the passion behind it is evident. It is striking and thought-provoking, in the best way; moreover, it serves as both a fantastic film and social commentary; leaving you with a lot to think about for days after seeing it. A must watch.
Reviewed by Luke