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DA FIVE BLOODS Pre-Release Thread
#1
Spike Lee's latest joint, about a group of Vietnam vets who return to the country in their old age to find the body of their commanding officer... and the stolen gold bars they buried beside him. Hits Netflix in one month. Starring Delroy Lindo, Clarke Peters, Jonathan Majors, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Norm Lewis, and Chadwick Boseman.

https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/202...first-look

BlacKkKlansman was the best film Spike had made in ages, here's hoping he continues that upstreak. At the very least, sounds like a real juicy role for Delroy Lindo.
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#2
Really intriguing...is this at all related to MIRACLE AT ST. ANNA?
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#3
The most exciting thing about current Spike Lee to me is that you have no idea if the movie you're stepping into will be a masterpiece or ungodly awful.
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#4
(05-14-2020, 03:13 PM)atomtastic Wrote: The most exciting thing about current Spike Lee to me is that you have no idea if the movie you're stepping into will be a masterpiece or ungodly awful.

hahaha!  He really is unpredictable.

He makes messy films that have some profoundly powerful moments.  Chiraq might be my second favorite of his.   Such a ridiculous, out there movie that had several moments that made me tear up.
"Why did she do it?"
"Why are you the fucking Police?"

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#5




Looks fuckin' great.
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#6
Ah shit they got Jean Reno in this bitch?

But yeah that looks good.
"Why did she do it?"
"Why are you the fucking Police?"

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#7
Looks pretty good.

**Godawful title, though.

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#8
Bumping over Boone's thread because fair's fair.

Really phenomenal trailer. Hope the film lives up to it and doesn't succumb to Lee's tendencies to ramble to the point of losing all focus and flow. (And I'm fine with some rambling, I just hope Lee makes it work to the good of the film this time--he's hit or miss on that front).

Watching this trailer and I wondered how much more of a foothold streaming services might have when it comes awards season.
the empire never ended
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#9
Looks like it could be interesting. Also looks like it could be super preachy, which is basically what's killed all Spike Lee movies for me the past 15 years or so.
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#10
(05-22-2020, 09:13 AM)simbob Wrote: Looks like it could be interesting. Also looks like it could be super preachy, which is basically what's killed all Spike Lee movies for me the past 15 years or so.

Only 15 years?

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#11
Maybe about, more or less. It only really started to bother me on a rewatch of 25th Hour. Funnily enough the preachiness of his films annoyed me more when I was having to go to church more; I guess before that I gave it a little more leeway, or maybe he was a bit better at it, or maybe both.
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#12
If anything he seems a lot less preachy now than he was in the 90s. Or has managed to fold his messaging in to the narrative better. Although I realise this is a relative measure. For some any amount of clear messaging will trigger them (Which is understandable to a degree. In Western film culture we have this unwritten rule that you're not supposed to do that)
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#13
This is a scene from the 2006 Spike Lee joint Inside Man:



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#14
Exactly. That's got nothing on most of Jungle Fever or Mo Better Blues or He Got Game. You need a little interlude like that to even know it's a Spike Lee movie (that and a surrealist dolley shot or two)
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#15
Haven't seen this posted on here... I like this poster a lot!

[Image: EY3lV6lU8AIvgPW.jpg]
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#16
(05-28-2020, 08:41 AM)Mangy Wrote: Haven't seen this posted on here... I like this poster a lot!

Why?  You a Basquiat fan?

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#17
Did he inspire that poster? Then yes!
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#18
81 on Metacritic. Sounds like Spike's done it again.

https://www.metacritic.com/movie/da-5-bloods?ref=hp
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#19
I'm expecting a big unwieldy mess...not a complaint!
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#20
Well, it's just as sprawling as you would expect it would be. It's big and wild and some parts work better than others, though it's never less than watchable as Spike just goes for it in the way that only he can.

But Delroy Goddamn Lindo holds it together. The shit he pulls off in the third act is just outrageously enthralling. Just outright Shakespearean grandeur and tragedy. He is just turned loose and holds nothing back and it is something else. The film kinda runs into the same problem as Treasure of the Sierra Madre as a result - like Bogart in that film, Lindo's arc is so electric that it kinda overwhelms the other stuff in the third act, which is good, but not on that level (though the final coda is pretty tremendous). Terence Blanchard might also turn in his finest work ever. Insanely good score that helps bind it all up. Boseman and Majors are also really terrific.

Overall, quite a viewing experience, lots to ruminate over.
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#21
(05-28-2020, 05:38 PM)Mangy Wrote: Did he inspire that poster? Then yes!

I wouldn't say that poster looks like any Basquiat I've ever seen.
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#22
Absolutely loved it. There's a lot of Spike I haven't seen yet, so not sure where I'd rank it in his filmography, but my favorite of the year at least. Studded with references to APOCALYPSE NOW, BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI and especially TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE, and Isiah Whitlock gives maybe the finest "Sheeeiiiiiiiiiiiiiit" of his career. If Delroy Lindo doesn't get an Oscar nom, then... well, I'll disagree!
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#23
Lindo is fairly incredible here. 

Liked the fact that they used all the actual actors in the flashback Nam scenes. With all the hoopla over digital de-aging it was refreshing for this film to say "Hey, just pretend their younger. Not hard."

Definitely had SURVIVING THE GAME flashbacks during one of the more grizzly scenes.
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#24
Yeah, I still get why they did it for THE IRISHMAN because of the weathered 70 year olds involved, but I was never taken out of it during this.

One other thing: the moment where it goes from letterboxed widescreen to fullscreen was pretty amazing on my TV...this might be the best use of different ratios that I've seen. I bet it would have been brain-blowing in the theater.

This had the same amount of Spike Lee Diversions ™ as his other films, but it all worked for me much more. The LAMB stuff was fairly plot contrive-y, but the end result was terrific.
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#25
I posted this remark elsewhere and see you guys have already covered it mostly, but I will just repost for the sake of saving myself time, haha.

Spike's movies are always going to have some awkwardly constructed scenes, lax editing, on the nose dialogue. I think this movie worked for the most part. Delroy Lindo is incredible and he has a couple monologues that obliterate the fourth wall and send chills through the screen. I have mixed feelings about the plot (a lot of contrivances and a lot of Apocalypse Now and Treasure of Sierra Madre riffing... along with a weird Blazing Saddles reference, ha) and sometimes the film just sort of dawdles.

Blanchard's score is getting praise but it was a bit too shmaltzy for me. However, the soundtrack features of Marvin Gaye work sooo well, What's Going On is one of my favorite albums and Spike really had a vision for it (also a classic Curtis Mayfield track). You get a sense of what the film could have been if the music had been more like that throughout and the film had cut back on some of the dialogue.

It is definitely a film of moments. Like a lot of Spike's work, it is very messy, but I do think the powerful polemic hits (the opening montage, the closing MLK speech, and how that stuff is woven into the film) and Lindo's incendiary, captivating rendition of a complex character make it well worth a watch.
the empire never ended
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#26
For the most part, the film worked really well for me. I love all the actors in this. Does it have some odd edits? Yes, that is Spike Lee. I actually really liked the aspect ratio change between past and present. I will say, pacing wise, right before the gangsters show up and the plan goes to hell, I paused to rotate some laundry, but surely I thought the film was nearing its end. We were 90 minutes in with 43 minutes remaining. It felt long, but that is a minor complaint.

And we got a great Isiah Whitlock "Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeiiiiit"
"Wilford Brimley can't be bothered to accept praise. He doesn't act because he thinks people will enjoy his work. He acts because it's his goddamned job." --Will Harris, AV Club
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#27
I watched this recently as well and enjoyed it.  Great work from the whole cast, especially Delroy Lindo.

Maybe I have been too focused on sports recently because in the first half of the movie the cadence of his line readings reminded me of Lebron James.

Also, it is definitely too long.
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#28
wasp, what was the Blazing Saddles reference?

The one contrivance which took me out was the land mine crew showing up at the exact right time. I actually said "now wait a damn minute" out loud to that one.

I thought the score was fine, but it was completely overshadowed by the Marvin Gaye tracks. The acapella version of "What's Going On" was particularly haunting.

Re: the editing, I kinda like it when Lee does that thing where he cuts from a gesture or laugh or moment to emphasize it from another angle, jump cut be damned. I don't have a logical reason for it, but I like it in an "I think it's kinda cool" way. GODARDIAN, even.
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#29
I loved it. Lindo very clearly the front runner for Best Actor or Best Supporting Actor.

It is, as others have noted here, very Spike. But it's also a reminder that Spike is, pound for pound, probably one of the two or three best American filmmakers working.

Watching it on Netflix actually was a bonus. While obviously it would have been incredible to see in the theater, the fact that it being on a streaming platform allowed for breaks - and breaks seemed like they could be built into the narrative - helped.

Two minor complaints - I initially thought Otis' fate was different, and that the end was more of a dream sequence, so that was a little confusing. And holy shit was that brutal what happened to Broadway legend Norm Lewis (Eddie).
home taping is killing music
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#30
Spike definitely has that thing that Godard had where he's got the meta thing going and doesn't really care about you trying to suspend disbelief. He is just gonna make a movie that knows it's a movie. Unlike Godard, Spike still wants your full emotional investment in what you are watching, so that is a sort of weird combination... but I guess it is to Spike's credit that he pulls it off sometimes.

After I typed that I remembered Blazing Saddle's "stinkin' badges" reference is a actually a spoof of Treasure of Sierra Madre, so I guess it is just more Sierra Madre riffing, ha. That felt pretty forced to me, though. But it's like Spike can't help himself, he will actually go out of his way to work some of this shit in.
the empire never ended
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#31
I didn't know until I was listening to a podcast this week on the film that SIERRA MADRE is Spike's favorite movie of all time!

(06-15-2020, 01:04 AM)MrTyres Wrote: And we got a great Isiah Whitlock "Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeiiiiit"

The moment when it goes to SUPER WIDESCREEN and this moment with Whitlock are the two that made me wish I'd seen it in a theater, because the Sheeeiiit is also very clearly designed to get an audience reaction.
home taping is killing music
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#32
The super widescreen transition was so awesome, even on my TV at the house. I went "OOOOO!" when that happened.

Quote:After I typed that I remembered Blazing Saddle's "stinkin' badges" reference is a actually a spoof of Treasure of Sierra Madre, so I guess it is just more Sierra Madre riffing, ha. That felt pretty forced to me, though. But it's like Spike can't help himself, he will actually go out of his way to work some of this shit in.

Yeah, that moment and Peters muttering "Madness!" RIVER KWAI-style were about Spike's love of movies more than the story. But hey, I forgive it from Tarantino, I'll allow it for Spike too.

Quote:Two minor complaints - I initially thought Otis' fate was different, and that the end was more of a dream sequence, so that was a little confusing. And holy shit was that brutal what happened to Broadway legend Norm Lewis (Eddie).

Thought the same thing about Otis. 

I knew exactly what was about to happen to Eddie when he started awkwardly walking backwards but still, JEEZ.
I was in a horror-comedy called BLACK HOLLER. It's now on Prime Video. Check it out!
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#33
The subsequent scene after Eddie dies where they have to figure out how to get David off the landmine is fucking terrifying.
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#34
The Big Picture podcast specifically talked about that land mine scene, and that's probably the scene for me that is The Most Spike Lee, in that you have this incredibly tense sequence that's masterfully constructed...and on top of that, you have all this context about fathers and sons, and then you have all this additional subtext or text, like the Morehouse material, and what that means in the context of black history and the film (Both Spike and MLK went to Morehouse), or even how you could read that scene as what Spike thinks the role of "white allies" are...there's just so much in addition to your dramatic investment in the scene.
home taping is killing music
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#35
(06-15-2020, 10:38 AM)boone daniels Wrote: The Big Picture podcast specifically talked about that land mine scene, and that's probably the scene for me that is The Most Spike Lee, in that you have this incredibly tense sequence that's masterfully constructed...and on top of that, you have all this context about fathers and sons, and then you have all this additional subtext or text, like the Morehouse material, and what that means in the context of black history and the film (Both Spike and MLK went to Morehouse), or even how you could read that scene as what Spike thinks the role of "white allies" are...there's just so much in addition to your dramatic investment in the scene.

And I agree 100%, but I wish the explosion of Eddie had not happened. Partly because the film told us that was coming the moment a land mine team showed up at the bar, and the big emotional scene was telegraphing like hell the actor was about to leave the movie. You could have him die at the temple and it work just as well. I guess after Eddie, and David nearly dying on a mine, having Seppo run straight into one later is just one too many. Let's rescue David. March everyone, keep everything the same, lose Seppo to the mine which causes the chaos that leads to the team splitting.
"Wilford Brimley can't be bothered to accept praise. He doesn't act because he thinks people will enjoy his work. He acts because it's his goddamned job." --Will Harris, AV Club
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