Originally published on metropolis.co.jp on July 2009

©2008 Produzione Cinematografiche-All Rights Reserved

©2008 (Buffalo Soldiers and On My Own Produzione Cinematografiche-All Rights Reserved

Normally excellent director Spike Lee lets his passion get in the way of his filmmaking with this leaden, poorly focused, 2:40-long would-be epic about the 92nd Infantry, the “Buffalo Soldiers,” black men fighting in WWII. Lee was apparently loath to cut anything from screenwriter James McBride’s novel, resulting in a patchy melodrama with way too many characters and subplots. Looks good, and the acting’s fine, but as a whole it’s less than convincing. A so-so wartime procedural with increased social consciousness, this is a film that’s impossible not to admire, but it’s a real slog.