Hustle & Flow (2005)
USA / English
"Everybody gotta have a dream. "With help from his friends, a Memphis pimp in a mid-life crisis attempts to become a successful hip-hop emcee.
A fresh take on music movies
Movies and music, that's the winning combo when it comes to industry
amalgams but haven't we seen it all? We have the good; The Bodyguard
and 8 Mile, the bad Honey and the downright ugly aka Glitter (put the
crossbow down, I had to mention it). However, this John Singleton
produced flick snipes at the genre from a different angle.
The increasingly talented Terence Howard (recently seen in Ray and
Crash), plays DJay, a pimp turned rapper who wants to prove his worth
and swap his tricks for a trade in America's crunked up south.
Newcomer Craig Brewer takes the helm as we visit Memphis and see it
through the eyes of the down but not outters consisting of DJay and his
working girls. When he reunites with school friend Key (Anthony
Anderson) they decide to take charge of their lives and realise their
dream by putting together a demo tape of their skills, with the hope of
hitting the big time.
This is not a bad movie, in fact Howard is equally as convincing as a
pimp with a newly found heart and as a rapper, something that was both
a bold and a fruitful choice. If the star hadn't convinced on any level
it is a sure-fire guess to say a non-rapper would never be allowed to
rap in a movie, but he did and he did it well.
The standard underdog making it to the big time route has been bypassed
and replaced with a story that hold's your attention and has an
unpredictable and real conclusion.
Amongst Flow's supporting cast, Isaac Hayes takes stage as the
bar-owner who puts DJay in touch with the hometown's former star-
Skinny Black, played sneeringly by Chris 'Ludacris' Bridges. As well as
these two familiar songsters, Anthony Anderson and DJ Qualls, of Road
Trip fame, make up the group and put in solid performances. The female
cast who constitute DJay's trade are Eminem's ex-girlfriend in 8 Mile,
Taryn Manning and Paula Jai Parker as the outspoken Lexus, again all
providing non-sterling but convincing turns as part of the phat pack.
But it is Taraji P. Henson's part as the heavily pregnant Nola who
catches the eye as a sweet and naïve part of the outfit. It is her who
seems to be the only person that allows DJay to relinquish his
sometimes brutal pimp suit and put on something more responsible and
caring as he ventures out hustling for his right to fame.
This is not your standard cheer at the screen rise-to-fame story that
Americans seem to love, too much. What it is, is a well thought out
project that takes you on a journey of trials and tribulations that are
the all more convincing when performances by Howard, Manning and Henson
garnish the story.
|Nr of disks/tapes:||1|
|Storage device:||Divx 4|