Paula’s review published on Letterboxd:
America's on fire right now and until the fire is extinguished don't nothin' else mean a goddamn thing.
Judas and the Black Messiah is an exhibition of stellar performances and shakespearian, grandiose lines. Fred Hampton is efficiently shown from an epic and larger-than-life perspective, in sequences in which Daniel Kaluuya shows his outstanding acting skills. Meanwhile, LaKeith Stanfield is equally great as the FBI informant Bill O'Neal, and though the screenplay never gives enough depth to his amazingly complex character, Stanfield still makes his part remarkable and powerful.
The movie has undeniably some pacing issues, especially during the sequences in which the FBI officials discuss the next steps of their infamous operation. While the narrative has its greatest strength when Kaluuya and Stanfield are on screen, others don't have the same dramatic intensity, sometimes putting a damper on what had been developed previously. Camera work is good, sometimes hit-and-miss but cinematography has unquestionably brilliant demonstrations, especially during Hampton's speech for the Panthers, the best and most iconic moment of the movie.
Judas and the Black Messiah bare naked and raw aesthetics is efficient to give emphasis to Kaluuya's and Stanfield's work, a collaboration that makes this movie rise to higher levels, proving that the dramatic effort of actors is not only a quintessential element of any movie, but also the detail that makes an entire work remarkable and thought-provoking.