Cinema: In The Mood

MO' BETTER BLUES

Directed and Written by Spike Lee

Moral controversy is often the filmmaker's friend. If you can get people spinning their wheels about whether your characters did good or bad when confronting a hot contemporary issue, you can usually distract them from your deficiencies as a craftsman.

It worked for Spike Lee last year with Do the Right Thing. The discussion then was all about whether or not the film endorsed a violent response to racism, not about the quality of the work. His new movie, Mo' Better Blues, is stirring a less commercially useful controversy, having been denounced...

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