25th Hour Review
What is the maximum you can take from an analogy before it falls under the weight of its self-importance? Spike Lee's latest film is an account of a drug addict who cleans up his act, but it's actually an examination of the post-Giuliani era of New York and the effects of the former mayor's tough line approach towards criminality. The film also features an addict who wants to ruin his beautiful boy appearance before going to prison, which means it's actually about heterosexual men's anxiety about sodomy.
However, it's about a dealer who is finally able to accept that the punishment handed out to him is only his fault, resulting from his own indiscretions from the past It's also about the current state of the political system of America. According to this interpretation, Monty is the USA and he is no longer able to be blamed by the former Latin American (i.e. Third World victim) girlfriend for his troubles however, he must allow Monty's previous Soviet (i.e. the failing superpower) group fight with each other. He also seeks out suggestions from his fellow members and teachers (cultural background) and his Wall Street broker (financial might) and his former fireman father (the hands who built America). We're not quite sure how the dog will fit in yet.
In reality, the interpretation above isn't too absurd. There's a reason Lee creates a pivotal sequence in an apartment that overlooks Ground Zero, now a bleeding wound in the map of the streets and the psyche of New York. David Benioff wrote his novel prior to 9/11, however his screenplay is akin to the feeling of the city and its residents who have been shook to their center.
Much like Monty like Monty, every person must take a look at themselves and weigh his mistakes and, if required make his debts pay before he can earn redemption. This creates the film an one of the Lee's most intelligent and relevant films that tamps down the anger to allow for more reflection and even a bit of uncertainty when the credits start rolling. Naturally, the movie may be just about the story's surface. The film wouldn't be less entertaining for it.