Warning: The article contains spoilers on BlacKkKlansman and Riley’s tweets.
While allowing that Lee has been “a huge influence” on his career, Riley took issue with the fictionalization of the story, wherein police are made out to be heroes in the battle against racism. Lee’s film tells the true story of a black detective infiltrating a Colorado Springs chapter of the Ku Klux Klan.
“After 40 years of cop shows and cop movies, did we really need one more movie where it’s supposed to be about racism but the cops are the actual heroes of the film and the most effective force against racism?” Riley asked. The director noted his tweet was a “rhetorical question,” indicating the answer is “no.”
Riley previously tweeted support for Lee and enthusiasm about seeing the BlacKkKlansman film. Some observers have noted that both films are now in the theaters, setting up a quasi-competition.