Paul McGuire Grimes of Paul’s Trip to the Movies gives us a few suggestions on what to watch this weekend.
DA 5 BLOODS (Netflix)
Spike Lee finally won his first Oscar for writing BlacKkKlansman a couple of years ago. In my opinion, he was robbed of Best Picture. Maybe we can reverse some wrongs with his new powerful new film Da 5 Bloods. The film centers on four Vietnam war vets played by Delroy Lindo, Isiah Witlock Jr, Clarke Peters and Norm Lewis. They’ve reunited in Vietnam for the first time in order to reclaim the body of their fallen soldier and brother Stormin’ Norman played by Chadwick Boseman along with some buried gold they found while serving.
-Now streaming on Netflix
-Da 5 Bloods is emotionally draining much like you might expect from a passionate storyteller like Spike Lee. As these men start literally digging up their past, it becomes a surge of emotions that they not quite ready for which in turns takes the audience by an unexpected surprise. It’s not an easy watch given the subject matter.
-There isn’t a wasted moment when you have an exceptional ensemble of actors firing on all cylinders as their characters risk their lives in order to find closure. They’re led by Delroy Lindo who has worked on many Spike Lee joints before, but here gives a performance so rich as he holds nothing back. It’s one of the best performances I have seen on screen in the last decade. He’s deeply wounded from the war like so many veterans have been that he just shook me from inside with his performance. He has a monologue delivered right to the camera in a tight frame that will have a lasting effect on the audience.
-Da 5 Bloods may be two and a half hours, but Spike Lee packs a punch. It’s graphic, violent, sad, and that history lesson Lee is so good at giving. It’s one of the best films of 2020 and will be on my best of the year list. It’s now streaming on Netflix. Check out the rest of their Black Lives Matter section.
RATING: 5 out of 5 TICKET STUBS
You may know Laverne Cox best from her Emmy-nominated work on Orange is the New Black. She is the executive producer of the new Netflix documentary, Disclosure. The 1995 documentary The Celluloid Closet shined a light on gay representation in film. Think of Disclosure as the next iteration of that as it takes a deep dive into transgender representation in film and TV. The documentary points out that 80% of Americans do not know or have never met anyone that is trans, so the representation in film and TV is vital for an education on the trans community. There are a variety of people interviewed from Laverne Cox and MJ Rodriguez (Pose) to Lilly Wachowski (The Matrix) and Candis Cayne (Dirty Sexy Money) and more!
-The documentary takes a chronological approach covering decades of negative tropes from the early days of cross-dressing on screen to then portraying trans people as street workers, victims, deviants, and drug addicts. Too often these characters were treated flippantly, dangerously, or used as taboo topics on talk shows like Jerry Springer and Donahue. We have since moved to having truly groundbreaking series like Transparent and Pose.
-The documentary should be watched by everyone, but there was a really poignant moment with a dad talking about how he had to accept and embrace his child’s transition from one gender to the next. This documentary can be very beneficial for parents out there with kids who have come out as trans.
QUEER EYE Season 5 (Netflix)
The Fab Five (Karamo, Bobby, Antoni, Tan, and Jonathan) are back for a new season of Queer Eye on Netflix. Each season finds the guys in a different city with Philadelphia as the setting for this go around. It aptly provides for patriotic themes throughout the show. All five of them have skyrocketed to fame since the reboot premiered, but their dedication and good will hasn’t changed. It’s easy to see how truly touched they are by their clients and vice versa.
-This show is no longer the kitschy make over show it once was in the early 2000s. The new iteration further drives home its intentions of pointing out how the inner makeover is far more important than the outer.
-It’s the healthy kind of reality TV actively making a difference. Season 5 comes at a time when we may need this show the most in 2020 when the divide, the hate, the anger has taken over our country. Some of us feel helpless and the Five Fab remind you that in order to help and take care others, you need to do that to yourself first.