Time for closure...
I am convinced that while Spike Lee Flicks, adapted for the current market, would be a critical success, in that most movie reviewers are – pretend to be – at least DECENTLY objective when looking into these things.
If Spike Lee’s name would be good enough to get the movie onto enough screens nation/worldwide, he would make enough money to cover production and make profit enough to continue doing him, but they would SURELY not be landslide success-level blockbusters.
“why,” you ask?
Black audiences these days tend to run away from being told about themselves. It seems that they would more often rather be told how to feel, be it feeling sorry for themselves, to hate their own or just when and how to cry.
White audiences often don’t understand “black” issues, even if they feed you the ‘I have tons of black friends’ line ad-infinitum.
The days of PAYING to be taught some shit died in college to a great many people of all races. You wanna teach me some shit, you need to pay me, on the clock, like my employer does when I am to be trained.
Polarizing figures of this type are not so much heralded in 2010 as they were in the late 80s. Tell black people they’re fuckin’ up and they’ll call you a ‘hater’ and ignore the lesson. Tell anyone else THEY’RE fuckin’ up and you’ll be dubbed an ‘angry black man,’ or ‘intolerant’ or one of those other fun words they usually sit on until they're in need of code language for why you should hate the president.
All told, there is a reason that Spike Lee movies are not so much a draw as they once were, and indifference in the community is the tip of the iceberg. That said, no matter HOW interesting or modern this could be made, I am not sure that these movies would have aged or gone over terribly well in today's climate.
Sure, there would be those to go and see them for nostalgia and a great many of them would like them, but those "for" are most often less vocally so than those who are "against," and the 'this ain't NOTHIN like the original' crowd would be the taste-makers.
[Phlip note - we must stop Michael Bay before he finishes killing Transformers for me]
To draw on my favorite parallel, it is the same thing that people can and do say “man, I listen to hip hop, but all I listen to is the beat, I don’t be listening to the words like that.”
No longer is it even COOL to expect someone to dissect and understand a message. Tell them how to feel, tell them when to cry and use overtly stupid-ass physical humor to dictate when they should laugh. They aren’t out to see movies for what the movie is about or what is conveyed so much as they are for who is in the movies. In the world we live in now, critical acclaim is no longer enough, you gotta do some numbers to get by. The movies could review wonderfully, but the fact that people have readily accepted being made dumb would make a HARD sell of a Spike Lee movie in the current climate.
… in my opinion, of course.
What do y'all think?
Life, love, hip hop, humor AND instructions on how to cook a bangin'-ass meal... all in one place. I put the words here, make what you want of them.
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