I’ve always suspected that Melvin Van Peebles’ early 1967 French made film, The Story of A Three Day Pass, was a big
influence on Spike Lee’ early films.
I can’t prove it, nor have any evidence. Spike has never
said so, and Van Peebles has never made any claims to my knowledge. But there
are, in my opinion, certain stylistic similarities
here and there with Pass and Spike’s early work.
If you want to see for yourself, and if you’re fortunate
to be located in the Chicagoland area, you
can tomorrow, Friday, April 19, when Block Cinema, which is located
at 40 Arts Circle Drive Evanston, IL on the Northwestern University campus, screens the film, starting at 7PM.
The film, which was based on an early novel Van Pebbles
wrote while living in France, called La
Permission, deals with a weekend affair between a black U.S. soldier stationed
in France (Harry Baird) and a white
French sales clerk (Nicole Berger). Needless to say, things don’t go well for them.
But what’s even better is that Mr. Van Peebles will be there in person for a conversation
with Northwestern Associate Professor Thomas
Bradshaw about the film, afterward.
And even better than that – it’s all totally FREE!
Here’s the trailer: