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BlacKkKlansman (2018)

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In 12 theaters near Ashburn VA US [change]

Ron Stallworth, an African-American police officer from Colorado, successfully manages to infiltrate the local Ku Klux Klan with the help of a white surrogate, who eventually becomes head of the local branch.

Director:

Spike Lee
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Popularity
18 ( 10)

Director's Trademarks: Your Guide to Spike Lee Joints

Get a closer look at the cinematic stylings of BlacKkKlansman director Spike Lee to discover what Do the Right Thing, Malcolm X, and Inside Man have in common.

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3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alec Baldwin ... Dr. Kennebrew Beauregard
John David Washington ... Ron Stallworth
Isiah Whitlock Jr. ... Mr. Turrentine
Robert John Burke ... Chief Bridges
Brian Tarantina ... Officer Clay Mulaney
Arthur J. Nascarella ... Officer Wheaton (as Arthur Nascarella)
Ken Garito ... Sergeant Trapp
Frederick Weller ... Master Patrolman Andy Landers
Adam Driver ... Flip Zimmerman
Michael Buscemi ... Jimmy Creek (as Michael Joseph Buscemi)
Laura Harrier ... Patrice Dumas
Damaris Lewis ... Odetta
Ato Blankson-Wood ... Hakeem
Corey Hawkins ... Kwame Ture
Dared Wright ... Officer Cincer
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Storyline

Director Spike Lee's drama was produced by the team behind Get Out and offers another provocative exploration of American race relations. In the midst of the 1970s civil rights movement, Ron Stallworth (John David Washington) becomes the first black detective on the Colorado Springs Police Department. He sets out to prove his worth by infiltrating the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan and convinces his Jewish colleague (Adam Driver) to go undercover as a white supremacist.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Infiltrate hate. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout, including racial epithets, and for disturbing/violent material and some sexual references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 August 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Black Klansman See more »

Filming Locations:

Ossining, New York, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,845,330, 12 August 2018, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$46,480,350, 20 September 2018

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$25,592,685, 19 August 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Atmos

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An allegorical spin in the opening scene where racist trash sounding frightenly similar to Trump's "make America great" speech is being spouted by Alec Baldwin, who also plays the character of Trump on SNL. See more »

Goofs

The detective who inspired the Flip Zimmerman character was not Jewish in real life. Much like Zimmerman though, he was a non-religious man who found his detached views on faith changed by his experiences dealing with the KKK. See more »

Quotes

Patrice Dumas: You jive turkey.
See more »


Soundtracks

Freedom Ride
Written By Joe Defilippo
Performed By R.J. Phillips Band
Courtesy Of Joe Defilippo
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User Reviews

 
Spike Lee at his best
21 August 2018 | by Jared_AndrewsSee all my reviews

Spike Lee's talent never left. As is the case with great filmmakers, his perspective, his style and his vision have been present in all his work. As is also the case with great filmmakers, some of his work simply towers above the rest. 'Blackkklansman' is one of those towering achievements.

The film is difficult to classify because it transcends a single genre. At various times it's funny, dramatic, suspenseful, provocative. Often, it's many things at once. The one consistency of this heterogenous mixture, is excellence.

The story revolves around a college graduate, Ron Stallworth, who becomes the first black person to work for the Colorado Springs Police Department. Playing Ron is John David Washington, who, like his father, Denzel, carries himself and speaks with composure and power. He has a way of calmly making his presence felt without ever posing a threat, which is why the police chief believes he can command respect and handle the abuse he will surely take from the racist civilians (and fellow officers).

Ron quickly wins a chance to go undercover at a speaking event for a former black panther leader. His task to learn if the speaker is looking to incite violence (he's not). After a successful first mission, Ron is assigned to undercover work, and, one a whim, calls the number for the local KKK that he read in the paper. Buttering up the Klan-or as they call themselves, the organization-with fake white supremacist talk, he arranges a meeting. Since he's black, he teams up with a white officer, Flip (Adam Driver, who is spectacular in his role), to form the combined Ron Stallworth. It works like a charm because, as the real Ron says, "with the right white man, we can do anything."

Spike Lee is fair in his portrayal of everyone. Within some of the Klansman, there exists a puzzling contradiction-they're polite, courteous, and charismatic, but they're also despicable racists. Klan national director, David Duke, gracious to all the people all the white people he meets, but also says things like, "blacks are an in inferior race. It's a fact." Topher Grace plays Duke, a challenging role, with nuance and something that resembles likability (aside from the racism, obviously). Duke and a couple other Klansman are the kind of people that you could meet without knowing anything about them, and you might describe them as gentlemen. That is, until they slip a racist comment into conversation.

Other members of the Klan are slobbering, disgusting overt racists. Both types of people feel real, because they both are.

The police are portrayed fairly too. Some are evolved, others are trying but not quite there, and others are just as appalling as the slobbering, disgusting overt racist Klansman.

Spike Lee is at his best, as he typically is when working with material about race in America. Subtlety isn't always his strength or his intention, hence the mix of over-the-top and subtle racism. He opts to hammer home his message at the film's closing with some footage of last year's march in Charlottesville and the sound bites from a certain political figure that followed. Some viewers may argue that this footage wasn't needed. I think the film would work fine without it, but it certainly adds an extra punch.

The film's narrative is so utterly fascinating as a crime story that the elements of race could be removed and the movie would still work. But, it's the poignant social commentary that elevates the project to best picture contention.

There's so much going on that it's definitely a movie that needs to be watched twice. As great as it is the first time, I imagine that it's even better on the second viewing.

In any case, 'Blackkklansman' is one of the best movies of the year and one we will likely be thinking about for a long time.


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