Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Boyz 'N the Hood (1991)

Urban Crime Movie #1 (I've reviewed plenty of cop-and-gangster movies, but these deal primarily with street-level gangs and drugs. Please click the links to read my reviews of Colors, Blood In Blood Out, and Tuff Turf). 

Synopsis: It’s like Friday without the laughs. 

Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “BOYZ ‘N THE HOOD is the critically acclaimed story of three friends growing up in a South Central Los Angeles neighbourhood, and of street life where friendship, pain, danger and love combine to form reality.” 

What Did I Learn?: If a gangbanger accidentally bumps into you and doesn’t seem terribly apologetic about afterwards, let it go.... seriously, just let it go.  

Really?: So wait – Furious Styles (Larry Fishburne) has a lady-friend, and we never get to meet her, or discover how she gets along with either Tre or his mother? That seems like an odd omission, considering the entire movie revolves around Tre growing up with his Dad.  

Rating: Boyz ‘N the Hood is a powerful, thought-provoking film about life in the inner city. While the movie occasionally editorializes (the scene of Furious explaining the evils of gentrification to a small crowd of local residents probably should have been trimmed), it mostly works because the characters are real, and all-too-human; Tre is a good kid in a bad situation, and even Doughboy (Ice Cube) has some admirable qualities, once we get to know him. Highly recommended. 9/10 stars.

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