This Spike Lee drama has a timely quality like his acclaimed Blackkklansman in looking at four friends reuniting to find their deceased platoon leader from the Vietnam War half a century ago in present day Saigon.
Intense salience may be diminished by the diffuse nature of Da 5 Bloods but the wit and brotherhood braced by notions of arrogance and societal ignorance offers much examination from a thorny, hopscotching narrative with striking period flashbacks (without the use of de-aging trickery).
Going upstream with a guide provides what might be a clash of classic cinema like
Apocalypse Now and The Treasure of the Sierra Madre. As the quartet looks for a stash of gold bullion (that’s likely hard to carry) a corruptible side of humanity rears its ugly head in a noble rendering of history and culture. Within another appearing on the trip for their share.
Clark Peters, Norm Lewis, Isaiah Whitlock, Jr, and Delroy Lindo as Paul make up the amiably naughty, if conflicted group. Lindo really stands out more for his untidy shadings of the harrowing, even political. Chadwick Boseman (Black Panther, and 42) elucidates charisma as the fallen Stormin Norman.
With real life icons and newsreel footage, Lee works diligently with his deft contributors to stroke into what was an unrecognized larger segment of society fighting for the U.S. Explosive, visceral bursts can appear out of nowhere complemented by a surging core. And, the aspect ratios are boxed or widened to accentuate the practical effects as Da 5 Bloods can be impactful considering its range of sidebars.