Sorry to Bother You

Studio: Fox Home Entertainment

Nov 05, 2018 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Sorry to Bother You was one of the most buzzed about movies out of Sundance. It felt like anywhere you went in Park City, Utah, this strange little beast was being whispered about. Quickly, I rearranged my schedule to see this movie I knew nothing about. Upon its theatrical release over the summer, I went to see it again and now that it's on Blu-Ray and DVD, it's time for another visit.

That's the thing about director Boots Riley's directorial debut; it needs to be understood and absorbed over multiple viewings and over a period of time. Daring and ambitious - sometimes to its detriment - Sorry to Bother You is a strong calling card for future work by Riley.

Lakeith Stanfield stars as Cassius Green, who works as a telemarketer and is barely making ends meet. He quickly works his way up the ranks to the role of a "Power Caller," earning more money than he could ever dream of making for him and his girlfriend Detroit (Tessa Thompson).

That is quite possibly the simplest way to explain Sorry to Bother you on its most basic of levels. Set in a bizarre, present-day Oakland, Sorry to Bother You explores themes of greed, capitalism, gentrification and labor, all wrapped in a confounding package. The movie is richly layered but I'm not going to explain anything else that happens because part of the joy of seeing something like Sorry to Bother You is to watch the madness unfold.

As a first film, Sorry to Bother You is worthy of its praise because Riley commits to his unique vision and carries it through, even when the final act comes to a bit of a screeching halt. The movie builds up so much momentum in the first two-thirds, it becomes incredibly apparent when it can no longer sustain it. Call it first time filmmaker syndrome but it doesn't erase the sheer originality of the movie. Armie Hammer even shows up as the slimy cocaine-infused CEO of the telemarketing company, putting Tony Montana to shame in one scene.

After its reception and good word-of-mouth out of Sundance, Sorry to Bother You could have been a modest summer hit but came in just shy of $17.5 million at the domestic box office. Now that it's available to watch at home, Sorry to Bother You is worth watching, discussing and then watching again. Marvel in its weirdness and be thankful Riley gave us such an original piece of work.


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November 7th 2018

Sorry to Bother You is worthy of its praise.

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December 20th 2018

Lakeith Stanfield stars as Cassius Green was great.