Cinema Dispatch: Da 5 Bloods

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Da 5 Bloods and all the images you see in this review are owned by Netflix

Directed by Spike Lee

It’s not often that a film gets released at the EXACT moment it should be, but leave it to Spike Lee to make a movie worth talking about at a time when its message couldn’t be more relevant.  I’ve certainly liked more of Spike Lee’s movie’s than I haven’t with Chi-Raq being a downright masterpiece and it’s like movie studios are giving us anything else worth watching at this period of time (including Disney who thought putting Artemis Fowl on Disney+ was a better idea than just chucking it in a garbage can), so consider me pumped to see something important instead of just spending another evening watching reruns and staring at the ceiling!  Is Spike Lee’s timely examination of Black people’s relationship to the Vietnam War and by extension the systems created it which are still in place to this day, or is Lee like the rest of us and finds himself missing a step in these unusual times?  Let’s find out!!

Nearly fifty years after their tour in Vietnam, the remaining members of The Bloods return to Vietnam to reconnect, remember the good times, and find their fallen comrade Stormin’ Norman (Chadwick Boseman) who died during the war and whose body is still out there.  Our surviving members are Paul, Otis, Eddie, and Melvin (Delroy Lindo, Clarke Peters, Norm Lewis, and Isiah Whitlock Jr) as well as an unexpected fifth member David (Jonathan Majors) who’s the son of Paul and wants to keep an eye on him during this trip.  Now that’s all MOSTLY true, but there are some details missing such as the fact that The Bloods buried a whole bunch of gold back then and are out here to find it along with Stormin’ Norman to secure their retirements, though saying that to the US government who’s gold it is they’re digging up (it was supposed to be delivered to the Vietnamese government that was declared a loss after the plane crashed), so they omitted that part when they appealed to both countries’ governments to explore the area.  And so the journey begins, with our heroes telling stories of their time in the war, confronting the demons of their past, and hopefully leaving the country far richer than they entered it.  Will The Bloods find what they are looking for in this country they left long ago, and will it be what they came to find in the first place?  What hardships will they face along the way, and will their struggles ultimately be in vain?  How the heck is it that the ONE dude to die in the war was Black Panther!?  Isn’t he bulletproof!?

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“Did you find any vibranium yet?”     “That joke wasn’t funny the first time you made it, and it sure as heck isn’t funny the FIFTIETH time you made!!”

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Cinema Dispatch: Point Break

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Point Break and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures

Directed by Ericson Core

When Star Wars and Creed are bringing back beloved franchises in spectacular fashion, it takes a lot of nerve to try and sneak this movie right in the middle of it.  The original Point Break is one of those movies I’ve been meaning to see for a really long time, but never got around to for one reason or another.  Still, from what very little I know about it and from how the trailer for this remake looked, it definitely seemed like a shaky proposition to try and bring it back like this.  Still, I’ve been surprised by plenty of movies this year and I certainly don’t have the last movie to compare this to.  Could this be a solid remake of a minor action classic, or will this be yet another movie to throw in the pile of unnecessary remakes along with the likes of Total Recall whose writer coincidentally wrote this movie as well?  Let’s find out!!

The movie follows an FBI agent who as far as I can tell is ONLY referred to by his nickname Utah (Luke Bracey) that is brought in on a case that involves EXTREME thieves that are pulling some Robin Hood shtick with rich corporations.  The first of their crimes that the FBI is made aware of is the group driving motocross bikes through the twentieth story of a diamond sorting building and stealing all of them before crashing through the windows and parachuting to safety.  How they got the bikes all the way up there and how they weren’t caught once they landed is left a mystery, but let’s just say they escaped by sheer manly bro-force.  The reason why the FBI (or at least this one boss of his played by Delroy Lindo) wants Utah on the case is because the guy was an extreme sports practitioner before joining with the FBI.  That is… before the accident.

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“Remember when I was in the Point Break remake?  That was a dark time in my life…”

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