Thursday, June 25, 2015

"Dope" Review - Written by Tim Hellman

'DOPE': Four and a Half Stars (Out of Five)

A coming of age crime-comedy flick; about a geek high school student, who's about to graduate, that becomes involved in a life threatening drug-caper (along with his two best friends). The film was written and directed by Rick Famuyiwa (who also performed both duties on such popular romantic-comedy flicks as 'THE WOOD', 'BROWN SUGAR' and 'OUR FAMILY WEDDING'). It stars Shameik Moore, Tony Revolori (of 'THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL' fame), Kiersey Clemons, Chanel Iman and Zoe Kravitz. I found the film to be funny, clever and highly amusing.

Malcolm (Moore) is a nerdy straight-A high school senior, in Inglewood, CA, that's attempting to get into Harvard; despite discouragement from his counselor (and just about everyone else around him). He lives with his mother (Kimberly Elise), and never knew his father. He's also obsessed with old hip hop music, and is in a punk rock band with his two best friends; Jib (Revolori) and Diggy (Clemons). When Malcolm meets a local drug dealer, named Dom (A$AP Rocky), his life becomes even more complicated; after he and his friends attend a birthday party, for Dom, that the drug dealer invites him to. He also falls for Dom's stunningly beautiful girlfriend, Nakia (Kravitz).

I didn't really know what to expect, going into this movie, and I was pleasantly surprised by it. It's witty, insightful and the crime caper storyline is interesting (and very entertaining) too. The performances are all great; especially Moore (in a star making role). I also really like Kravitz; she's becoming one of my favorite actresses lately (and she's in just about everything). I also think she keeps getting more and more gorgeous, and impressively talented, with every role. It's Famuyiwa who really shines here, though, as he proves himself to be a very creative, and refreshingly talented, filmmaker (to watch out for). 'DOPE' is sure to become a cult classic!

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