Bamboozled Movie Review
Spike Lee delivers one of the most question-raising films in years with Bamboozled, a movie that points out the flaws of race in the media. Damon Wayans stars as the creator of "Mantan the New Millennium Minstrel Show," a variety show that puts blackface on black actors, and then proceeds to be overtly stereotypical, racist, and everything else controversial. However, as time goes on, his attempts to show racism in the media turns into a struggle for success, and he becomes one of the people that his show is trying to satire. Bamboozled is hard to explain, so it is better to just see it (it is worth seeing). On the most basic level, it takes the ridicule that blacks have faced in the media and turns it in on itself, creating a satire, but Spike Lee show how even that turns around again and ends up doing the same thing that it is trying to stop. Because, in the end, even if you are conducting a satire, it is still just a form of entertainment, and at the black person's expense. Bamboozled raises many questions, but on a purely technical level, it is well done. Spike Lee, like most of his films, does a wonderful job as director. Wayans' cooky accent takes a little getting used to, but it ends up working to the character's advantage. Jada Pinkett Smith is also really good, especially at the end of the movie. The frightening thing about this movie is Spike Lee's ending. It isn't bad, but it is such a turn for the worst it is hard to believe that you are watching the same movie. You have to see it to believe it. Words cannot describe Bamboozled, other than that it is a well done film with some very serious questions that most other directors aren't willing to tackle. It drags in some parts, and the ending is sort of strange, but it is entertaining and intellectual.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.