Bang (18). This intermittently interesting low-budget debut from British- born, LA-based director Ash explores issues of identity and power from the perspective of an Asian American woman (Darling Narita) who dons a policeman's uniform for a day. There are significantly more ideas here than in your average indie, even if they're not all thought through with equal clearheadedness.Reuse content
Get on the Bus (15). Spike Lee's independently financed labour of love follows the eventful bus journey of a group of black men from South Central, Los Angeles traveling to 1995's Million Man March in Washington DC. Reggie Rock Blythewood's script assembles a cross-section of passengers which is diverse to the point of being tokenistic: a pompous actor (Andre Braugher); a melancholy old-timer (Ossie Davis); a mixed-race cop (Roger Guenveur Smith); a newly reunited, emotionally alienated father and son; a former gang member; an aspiring film-maker (a Spike Lee in the making, no less); and, perhaps most surprisingly, a gay couple on the outs. Lee stages numerous confrontations and conciliations, some more telling than others, and winds up with a convincing portrait of black male solidarity. The conclusion is strange and uncomfortably heavy-handed, but for the most part, the film successfully alternates blunt urgency and infectious breeziness.