As a historian, who considers herself to be fairly woke, I was super excited to go see BlacKkKlansman. Starring John David Washington as the lead, Ron Stallworth, this movie delves into the true story of the first African American detective in the Colorado Springs Police Department who decided to investigate the local Ku Klux Klan chapter. With the help of a white officer Flip Zimmerman (in real life this person is anonymous), played by Adam Driver, Stallworth is able to write letters and make phone calls posing as a racist white American while Flip is the face of the operation.
After watching the movie, I was curious as to how true to life it was. After conducting some research, I did find out that there were many parts added for dramatic effect. Most of these parts I can’t get into without hitting spoilers, but one major add on was the character Patrice. She is the love interest of Stallworth in the movie, and the leader of the local Black Student Union – however not a real person.
I wish I could get more into the specifics of what is real, and what is not, however I can say that the basic plot of the movie is accurate. Ron Stallworth is a real person who legitimately infiltrated the KKK and was able to stop some of their famous scare tactics, such as cross burnings. The real Stallworth even still has his KKK membership card and certificate, signed by David Duke, Grand Wizard, himself.
I enjoyed the flow of the movie as well as the efforts of the writers to parallel what happened in this time to what is happening today. Many connections were made to the Trump administration, as well as the recent uprising in white supremacist rallies and police brutality. The movie ended with footage from the Charlottesville Riots, Donald Trump’s remarks about the event, and David Duke’s words of support for what the Trump administration is doing to further the cause.
Overall – I enjoyed this movie. I think that people who are not as into history as I am will also enjoy it as well. It is entertaining and has moments of intense drama and suspense as well as moments so funny you will literally scream laughing. I would give BlacKkKlansman a 10/10 – would recommend!
Written and Reviewed by Megan Weaver
Narrated by Daniel ‘Foxes’ Fox