Finish the summer right by going to see ‘Sorry to Bother You,’ one of the most original and thought-provoking movies of the year

(L-R) Lakeith Stanfield and Armie Hammer in

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(L-R) Lakeith Stanfield and Armie Hammer in “Sorry to Bother You.”
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Annapurna

  • “Sorry to Bother You” is one of the most powerful and originally told movies of the year.
  • Lakeith Stanfield gives one of his best performances yet in his young career, as he’s the face of director Boots Riley’s examination of class, race, and greed in an altered present-day Oakland.

Every weekend we pick an indie movie currently playing in theaters we think is definitely worth your time and money, and this week’s is “Sorry to Bother You.”

If you love movies you probably had quite a fulfilling summer, but if you still haven’t seen Boots Riley’s fantastic debut feature “Sorry to Bother You,” the summer movie season isn’t over for you yet.

A fantastical look at class, race, and greed, “Atlanta” star Lakeith Stanfield gives one of his best performances yet as Cassius “Cash” Green, a telemarketer in Oakland who discovers an incredible talent at his job that propels him to becoming a top “Power Caller”: he can talk like a white person. This unique gift leads to him being able to sell anything over the phone, even high-powered weapons and human labor. Though his friends, who are trying to organize a union at the company, and his socially conscious girlfriend, Detroit (played perfectly by Tessa Thompson), try to make Cash understand he’s a part of the problem, the money is just too good for Cash to step away. He gets so deep in the company that he comes face-to-face with the CEO he’s doing the selling for, Steve Lift (Armie Hammer). And then things get really interesting (and by interesting, I mean weird).

Riley mixes comedy and an important social message to deliver a movie that gets more fascinating and outlandish the deeper you go. And it’s the incredible talents of Stanfield – whose ability to go from perfect comedic timing to heartfelt emotional pain at the turn of a switch – that makes Riley’s insane story work on the screen. In the hands of a lesser actor, the movie would crumble into manufactured shock value.

Along with great supporting performances by Thompson, Danny Glover, and Terry Crews (David Cross is the one behind Cash’s white voice), the movie has top-notch production design to put you in a skewed reality, reminiscent of a Michel Gondry movie.

Nothing is as it seems in this movie, and that’s what makes it so memorable.

See where “Sorry to Bother You” is playing near you.

Our indie movie picks from previous weekends: