It's often the case that people will look back on old movies and TV shows and react with shock at the humour often used. I will admit, I'm probably one of the first to laugh at an old school gay joke, even as a man who enjoys other men's bottoms, but there's a growing trend recently which sees legitimate LGBTQIA criticism of such humour as being 'oversensitive.' I, personally, have always had a bit of a dark, no-limits sense of humour. If put in the right way and the right context, there's almost nothing that won't make me laugh as long as it's legitimately funny, but even I will find my own eyes rolling back into their sockets at some groan-inducing humour from the past.
Remember 2008? 11 years ago and a lot happened that year, The Dark Knight was released, Heath Ledger tragically passed away, and Barack Obama was elected as the first African-American President of the United States, confirming that racism is over. But something else happened that year that perhaps at the time may not have been seen as that significant; Iron Man was released.
Like most people born since 1964, I was privileged enough to have grown up having watched, many many times, the original Mary Poppins movie. Probably one of the most magical and wonderful films Disney has ever produced, Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke defined the childhoods of millions worldwide for decades. So the announcement that there was to be a sequel to the 1964 classic delivered feelings of trepidation. How could they possibly re-create the magic and joy the original movie brought? Would Julie Andrews return in the role? How about Dick Van Dyke, who is now 93-years-old? Would he still be sweeping chimneys as Bert? Well, of course, despite the irrational misgivings, the first trailer was released for Mary Poppins Returns, and I think many, including myself, breathed a sigh of relief.
If you ever get talking to me long enough, you'll find out that House of Cards (the American version), is by miles one of my favourite TV shows. Before the release of season 5, I wouldn't have hesitated in telling you that it was my favourite show outright. But the show has slipped, but not just stumbled—I'm talking slipped on a piece of ice and ended up breaking its own neck.
Before you start, I know the subtitle to this review is shit, so before you start criticising me, go fuck yourself. Now we have that out of the way, when I first saw the trailer for Bad Times at the El Royale I was instantly intrigued. Presenting a stellar cast and a cool setting, Bad Times was a film for which I had some very high hopes, and after seeing it this Friday, I'm very glad to say that the high hopes were comfortably satisfied.
Whenever you think of a Spike Lee film, you can guess very accurately that you're going to encounter a movie that delivers some very hard-hitting and true messages about race and division within modern American society. Whether he's doing a historical biopic like Malcolm X, or a comedy like Bamboozled, one thing that is prevalent through all his work is what it's like to exist as an African American in American society. The message is also clear that no matter the era in which his movies are set, things might look like they have changed, but things haven't really changed all that much at all.