Todd Russell’s review published on Letterboxd:
In the late 60s, the rise of the Black Panthers and a young, energic leader of the Chicago chapter named Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya). His battle for civil rights at a time when he was outrageously viewed as some kind of threat by the FBI. They have an informant, William O'Neal infiltrate Hampton's inner circle. This doubles as O'Neal's story.
I didn't know anything about either of these two people, so this movie served as a history lesson of sorts. Despite it being 50 years ago, it is angering watching what the government did to these Americans. The late 60s were definitely not a good time for black people in this country.
An important film about an era in the 60s we should not forget, handled with a lot of style, care and concern. If you don't know much about the Black Panther group (I didn't), prepare to be educated, while the telling of a true story is unveiled.
I had a little trouble getting into this movie in the beginning, but after the opening few scenes, I was riveted in the drama and wanted to see what happened next. Not knowing the true story of Hampton and O'Neal added extra punch. You might have to go to Wikipedia, like I did, to fill in some blanks. On O'Neal especially.
Daniel Kaluuya performance as Hampton is very good. I liked him in Queen & Slim. He has this quiet tenacity to his acting that makes you want to root for whatever his character is doing.
The script is well written, save for maybe the opening scenes. I didn't care as much for how it starts, although after finishing the film it makes more sense.
Watched this on HBO Max, but might rewatch in the theater also, just to see what other tidbits I might have missed. Liked this one. Didn't love it, but it was very good and overall entertaining. Recommended.