The Brilliance Of Daniel Kaluuya & Lakeith Stanfield

Disclaimer: Spoooooilers!

So, like I always say, I’m going to try and keep this post short today. The fact of the matter is, Judas and the Black Messiah is a great fucking movie, son. All I know is, Daniel Kaluuya and Lakeith Stanfield took turns putting on acting clinics in this shit. Real talk, after watching the film, my wife and I debated who’s the real focus of the plot. I mean, it’s hard to look away from Fred Hampton, but William O’Neal‘s story is equally as compelling, man. In any case, I just want to give credit where credit is due, fam. Shaka King did the damn thing with this film, bruh.

Ok, for those who are unaware, Judas and the Black Messiah dropped last week on HBO Max and in select theaters. The film chronicles O’Neal’s troubles with the law and how the FBI, namely Roy Mitchell, use him to infiltrate and destabilize Hampton and the Chicago faction of the Black Panther Party. Thanks to O’Neal’s informant-ass ratting, the Bureau is able to not only lock Hampton up over some bullshit, but eventually plan his execution. All in all, O’Neal leaves a lot of devastation in his wake.

Now, I could go on and on about what I love about the film, but I’ll just leave everyone with three takeaways (two about the film and one about the real story). First, I’m amazed by Kaluuya’s ability to not only embody Hampton’s personality, but also his vocal inflections. Son, it’s absolutely spooky that he can be that accurate. Frankly, it’s always a good time when I forget the actor and become fully-immersed in the character. Second, Stanfield does a fantastic job of leaving me confused. On the real, I can’t reconcile whether O’Neal really believes in the work that he’s doing or if he’s just playing the snitch for survival. All I can say is, Stanfield does an incredible job of making O’Neal seem ambiguous. Regardless, fuck William O’Neal.

Moving on, my third point relates to the actual story. Keeping it a buck, the film just highlights something that I’ve always felt: J. Edgar Hoover fucking won, man. Thanks to COINTELPRO, he was able to destabilize every Black movement in America. From Hampton to Martin Luther King Jr. to Malcolm X to Huey Newton, Bobby Seale and Eldridge Cleaver, Hoover was able to successfully destroy all of these movements from the inside. His fear of a “Black messiah” inspired him to decimate any group that strived for Black upliftment. The way I see it, the FBI can try to rebrand all they want, but their story is rooted in the oppression of Black people. That’s just a fucking fact, fam.

In the end, everybody should go watch the movie, bruh. Ultimately, it’s masterfully done and the real tale is incredibly infuriating. By and by, Hampton was right, son. At the end of the day, they can murder a revolutionary, but they can’t murder revolution. Always remembers that. That is all. LC out.

‘The Little Things’: Did Albert Sparma Do It?

Disclaimer: A lot of spoilers, son. Everyone knows what to do. Act accordingly.

So, here we are again, man. Another day, another film review. All in all, it’s clear that I’ve spent some time watching movies this weekend. Moving on, before my wife and I watched Malcolm & Marie, we actually watched The Little Things. In any case, despite some questionable reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, I fucked with the movie, fam. On the real, I like ambiguous endings, bruh. Hell, I like the fact that we’re not 100% sure if Leonardo DiCaprio‘s character Dom Cobb is back to reality at the end of Inception. With all of that being said, after watching The Little Things, I only have one question: is Albert Sparma really a killer?

Ok, before I continue, let me quickly go through the plot. Basically, Denzel Washington plays Joe Deacon, a former detective who lost his mind, health and wife after failing to catch a serial killer. Now, after accidentally killing an innocent woman at a crime scene, Deacon’s career goes off of the rails. Fast forward 5 years, Deacon now works as a deputy sheriff and Jim Baxter (played by Rami Malek) has taken his place. Anyway, after a new murder and a separate kidnapping that resembles the M.O. of the killer that Deacon didn’t catch, he and Baxter team up to try and solve the case. From there, their investigation leads them to Sparma (played by Jared Leto).

Now, even though they don’t have any hard evidence against Sparma, he looks super bad from a circumstantial standpoint. Frankly, he seems to know way too much about these crimes and he’s just a general weirdo. As time progresses, and after several failed attempts to catch him, Sparma tells Baxter that he’ll take him to the location of the kidnapped woman (a random desert). Problems arise before Deacon even makes it to the scene. Essentially, Sparma tells Baxter that he’s never actually killed anyone and has been lying to him the entire time. From there, in a moment of frustration after Sparma mentions his wife and children, Baxter hits Sparma with a shovel and kills him.

The wild part is, we have no idea whether Sparma is really the villain or not. As we learn earlier in the movie, he’s confessed to a crime that he didn’t commit before. On top of that, during searches of his car and apartment, neither Baxter or Deacon find anything. Shit, Baxter keeps harping on a red barrette that the kidnapped woman was wearing, but they’re never able to find it. In actuality, when Baxter receives a red barrette from Deacon in the mail, we realize that Deacon bought it himself. So, we never get any definitive proof of Sparma’s guilt. The fact is, everything is left in the open, bruh.

With all of that being said, I have conflicting feelings about Sparma’s guilt. On one hand, they couldn’t find any hard evidence to incriminate him. On the other hand, would Deacon goes so far to make Baxter feel better if the real murderer is still out there? In addition, would Deacon just let this case go, especially since it ruined his life? The way I see it, Deacon is playing a dangerous game if Sparma isn’t the guy. All I can say is, I just don’t know, son. I guess I’m about 60/40 in regards to Sparma’s innocence. Not for nothing, he’s simply a strange ass motherfucker, man.

In the end, what did other people think about the movie? Ultimately, it doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but I was entertained, fam. By and by, I don’t think I’d ever be disappointed by a movie with Washington, Leto and Malek. So, at the end of the day, I got my money’s worth, bruh (figuratively speaking). Anyway, off to the next thing, brethren. That is all. LC out.