Racism Displayed By The Film Blackkklansman

By: Joe DePasquale (Sport Management), 25’

The 2018 film “BlacKKKlansman” focuses on the story of a man named Ron Stallworth played by John David Washington who became the first African-American detective in the Colorado Springs Police Department who hurdled the racial inequities as an officer and to extreme extents to risk his life to do undercover infiltration of the Ku Klux Klan. The idea was that Stallworth would communicate with the Klan by telephone and another white police officer named Flip Zimmerman played by Adam Driver would become his alter ego when face to face encounters were necessary. His desire for motivation to infiltrate the Klan increased as did his desire to become something more than to be the Jackie Robinson of the police department.


The film is based on true events that were highlighted in Ron Stallworth’s memoir in 2014. The actors that were present in the film establish a sense of a believable strong racial irony. The film is an accurate representation because it tells a triumphant story and it exposes the cruelty of the racial past events. It also provides a sense of how the past time of racism is still operational in modern day society. The director Spike Lee uses instances of the past to articulate the anticipated criticism that a African-American director who portrays white racism is guilty of believing that he is anti-white. Lee established a view of comedy in the film to provide a relief from the deadly serious racial intentions; for example one of wives of a Klan member provided a stance of relief.  So, the overall message consists of that this particular movie is not the only one to convey messages about racism and the fact about African-American police intervening in the KKK. This film has more to offer than an African-American police officer who successfully infiltrated the Klan to assist the advanced efforts of Black Liberation in society.


The film “BlacKKKlansman” explains how in reality African-Americans and other racial minorities continue to put up with and endure racism. It has spawned different racial groups like the “Black Lives Matter” movement to push their message to put an end to racism in our society. Lee was able to produce a film that was able to highlight humorous moments and make clear of past moments to make his film open for a discussion about what is truly happening in society and what to fix. He tries to let the audience not miss the connections between racism back in the 1970’s until present with the police force and African Americans. The movie presents a standard conflict between the two regarding African-American characters, one of them has chosen to be a cop and the other one an African-American woman who deals with intense politics on a daily basis with the conflicts being left unresolved. Cinema has developed powerful ideas that have shaped American viewpoints in terms of race that create unethical stereotypes only to be transferred into policy making. Because that times are changing “BlacKKKlansman” was given a great opportunity to provide an audience that there is still racism in society today and it’s our duty to join movements and ultimately change.