Don Reviews "Detroit"
Given the fact that I am a huge fan of history, Detroit is one of the cities that I have always wanted to visit, from its automobile history to Motown, it is one of the hotbeds of activity in the last few decades alone. There are also the struggles of the city with the economy crashing, and of course the riots of the 1960s, which is dealt with in Kathryn Bigelow’s latest film named after the city.
Starring Anthony Mackie (Million Dollar Baby, Captain America: Civil War), John Boyega (Imperial Dreams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens), Algee Smith (Earth to Echo, Complications), Jacob Latimore (Ride Along, Sleight), Will Poulter (The Revenant, We’re the Millers), Jason Mitchell (Straight Outta Compton, Keanu), Jack Reynor (Free Fire, Sing Street), Hannah Murray (Dark Shadows, Bridgend), and Kaitlyn Dever (Short Term 12, Grass Stains). Based on true events during the 1967 riots in Detroit, it focuses on the events that happened at the Algiers Motel Incident where three African-American men died and others were allegedly mistreated by the police.
This really has that old film look, with a mix of the real life footage and the movie itself, which I really liked combined with its historical accuracy. When it comes to the acting, it was good overall, and while I see no nominations next year for this film, Mackie and Boyega do deliver. I have to note on the performance of Poulter as the extreme racist form of the “Barney Fife” style cop very well. When I look back at his roles in films like “We’re the Miller’s” and “The Revenant” to this role where he plays an extreme style jerk, I am a little impressed.
The film is over 2 hours and 20 minutes long, and I really felt it. The scene of the alleged incidents at the Algiers Motel was somewhere from 40-60 minutes long alone, which was too long for me. When I saw the trailer, I thought this film was about the riots, not the Algiers Motel incident. There was too much early buildup of the film, which was a bit confusing, and while at the end of the film it is acknowledged they re-enacted the incident as no one knows what truly happened at certain points, so it worries me that when people see this film, they may take too much of it for the facts. Bigelow did incredible with “Point Break” and “The Hurt Locker” (She deserved the Academy Awards for that film in my opinion), but this film does not seem like Bigelow or her style and it does not work, which is disappointing. I recommend this film as a rental at a Red Box.