“DOPE”–A MOVIE REVIEW   2 comments

“Fun”, “One of the more commercial prospects coming from the Sundance Festival”, “Breakout star”, “Dynamic camera work”, “Vibrant comedy”, “Best movie soundtrack of 2015” and, once again, as happens 2-3 times every year I get pulled into a movie by the hype and sit there dumbfounded at what is up on the screen!

Let’s see what “Dope” has. A lot of violence, some gratuitous, definitely a lot of cursing, a woman urinating on the street and/or vomiting in the face of a guy, nudity, mostly female of course, a high school teenager masturbating a couple of times and, of course, let’s not forget drugs, a lot of drugs. And that soundtrack? Definitely a generational thing!

Is there a neighborhood in Inglewood, California, known as “The  Bottoms”? Do A students, with their eyes on Harvard, have their sneakers stolen in school, physically taken from their feet, with no adults around to stop the thieves? Do they have their bicycles stolen on the way home and is there no place in-between a geek and a dope dealer in Black neighborhoods? 

One of the reasons I love the movies is that I can learn about groups of people I may not know otherwise but in “Dope” I didn’t know whether I was watching a comedy about stereotypes, and/or clichés, or this is the way a segment of Americans live. I have never lived in a ghetto, always in a community of various races, sexes, genders, nationalities, religions, geeks, jocks and people who made their living from all the different walks of life but this is one movie I was completely lost.

Shameik Moore, as Malcolm, is a charmer as the Harvard want to be student who gets involved in a backpack full of drugs along with a gun , and, by the way, a Bitcoin, scheme. Tony Revolori, as Jib, who is ‘14% Black’ and Kiersey Clemons, as a butch lesbian, along with Moore are the stars of the movie as the best of friends. Zoe Kravitz is a much wiser than he is love/sex interest for the virgin Malcolm. I felt sorry for Chanel Iman as her role is demeaning to all women while Kimberly Elise, as a single working mother represents the best in women, which is rare in this movie. A$AP Rocky as a local dope dealer, Quincy Brown as Iman’s brother, Roger Guenveur Smith as a Harvard interviewer along with Keith Stanfield, De’Aundre Bonds, Blake Andeson, Rick Fox and Amin Joseph, along with producer/narrator Forest Whitaker add to the film in various roles.

The music, mostly by Pharrell Williams, along with Lee Haugen and Germaine Franco, definitely is not for me! The direction and screenplay by Rick Famuyiwa was lacking and confusing to me and for a ‘comedy’ there was very little reaction from the mainly Black audience.

I left the theatre asking myself, “What did I miss?”




Posted June 19, 2015 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT

Tagged with , ,

2 responses to ““DOPE”–A MOVIE REVIEW

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. I’m sure they played it up, but there are some neighborhoods in Cali and in other cities, where things can get rough. When I lived with my aunt in Cali she paid a gang member to be my “body guard” on the bus to and from school to keep me from being attacked. That was in Jr high school. She was a bus driver for a while and was pulled from the bus by two young men and beaten within an inch of her life because she didn’t stop the bus when they told her to. Yes, stealing blatant and outright and adults who look the other way in order to keep themselves out of the fray are not uncommon and the more politically incorrect any form of discipline becomes the tougher things get. We now have armed guards in schools, police patrols of neighborhoods to monitor our children and with the trend to punish officers for every little offense is it any surprise that even our police are more likely to ignore youth crime than to engage the young criminals?

  2. Mmmmmmm methinks this film is not for me….Sounds unpleasant and uninviting…we’ll pass on this one.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: