Spike Lee's latest, "She Hate Me," came and went from theaters with about as much recognition as I get when I drive to the store. Isn't it amazing how poor his movies do when they don't star Denzel Washington or a white person? Of course, considering that this movie is a commentary on corporate ethics and, at the same time, a story about an unemployed black man who has sex with lesbians to impregnate them for money, you can't exactly expect a large reception.
"She Hate Me" stars Anthony Mackie as Jack, a man who has faithfully worked for a pharmaceutical company for several years but, after discovering that the company is hiding defects in their new AIDS vaccine, he whistle blows to the SEC and FDA. Instead of getting a slap on the back, he instead is fired, blacklisted from the corporate world and put under investigation by the SEC. Suddenly unemployed, he reluctantly decides to bed his ex-fiancé and her girlfriend, for $10,000 dollars, so they can have a baby together. His ex, Fatima (Kerry Washington), wanting to help him out, then refers him to several of her lesbian friends...
"She Hate Me" is filled with various social commentaries a la Spike Lee, but the various storylines are so random and seemingly unrelated it is difficult to understand what Lee's ultimate goal was. Regardless, I'm not going to try and judge his movie for its underlying themes, but instead am merely going to comment on the film's surface. Thus, this review may be a bit inaccurate, but since most of you reading it will never sit down to watch this movie anyway, it really doesn't matter now does it?
"She Hate Me" is actually a mildly entertaining film, mainly thanks to the allure of hot lesbians. Where so many hot lesbians exist in the real world is beyond me, but this movie is full of them. Mackie is pretty good but not explosive in the lead and Washington brings an intriguing character to the screen, but the acting isn't what carries the film. In fact, I don't know what does. Is it the screenplay? Is it Lee's carefree direction (which includes scenes of Mackie's sperm, imprinted with his joyous face, swimming their way to the egg)? I'm not quite sure, but "She Hate Me" works on a rudimentary level.
Still, it's a movie that leaves no lasting impression, no sense of "wow" or disbelief. The movie just is, a mildly entertaining, slightly intriguing piece of work from a director who has done much better stuff.
If you're a Spike Lee fan, then you've probably already seen or are planning on seeing "She Hate Me." Otherwise, if you do or don't catch this movie it really won't matter.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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