Twin Cities Peeps, make sure to see "Beats, Rhymes & Life" at the Uptown Theater This week!!
First off, if you are a fan of A Tribe Called Quest, you need to see this movie. It's a excellent look into the inner-workings of the group, thru the good and the rough. Secondly, if you are a fan of Hip Hop, you should go see this movie. Besides the fact, this is a well done documentary and there is a amazing cast of cameos and interviews, we should support things such as this to prove there is a demand. A couple weeks ago Michael Rapaport, the films director, did a promo video alongside Peanut Butter Wolf talking about the movie and the making of it. He made a interesting point of how in other genres there are multiple documentaries available about the stars of that genre. However, in Hip Hop there are close to none. Why isn't our Culture better documented? That's a challenge I place on the aspiring film makers of today who love and live Hip Hop.
As for the movie itself, I don't want to get too deep in specifics and ruin key moments in the movie. However, rest assured you will see a well rounded portrayal of the group; interviews, live footage, explanation of songs, how they all met, how the Native Tongues formed, the making of each of the albums and plenty of other interesting things are covered. Guest interviews and commentary help give a wealth of insight on the group as well, courtesy of Common, Pharrell, Questlove, Large Professor, DJ Red Alert, Prince Paul, Dres Of Black Sheep, Bobbito, De La Soul, Jungle Brothers, Black Thought, Chris Lighty (Violators), Monie Love, etc...
Chances are you have probably heard the controversy surrounding the documentary and Q Tip not being 100% behind the movie (although he did encourage people to still go see it). There are certainly a few scenes that immediately struck me as things that Q-Tip may have been unhappy with. However, they are also critical pieces in understanding the inner-group differences. On the surface, it's easy to make judgment calls on people in those situations, but I really think that when looking deeper at the full scope, as well as the intensity of the issues and the long history of the individuals, those scenes show the pure emotional investment and struggle the group members face. Without a doubt, professional relationships, particularly when amplified by additional dramatic events, can severely damage personal relationships. The Tribe story is a perfect example of that.
The movie is only at select theaters nationwide so wherever you are, do a search to find out if it is in your area. If you are in the Twin Cities, you have have until Thursday to catch it at the Uptown Theater (2906 Hennepin Ave ST)
Editors Pointless Note: Today I learned that Michael Rapaport share the exact same birthdate, including the year. Do what you will with that exciting information...
Written By Kevin Beacham