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New Jack City (1991)

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A crime lord ascends to power and becomes megalomaniacal while a maverick police detective vows to stop him.

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(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
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Scotty Appleton (as Ice T)
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...
...
...
...
...
...
Old Man
Christopher Williams ...
...
...
Keisha
Tracy Camilla Johns ...
Uniqua
...
Frankie Needles
...
Reverend Oates
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Storyline

The gangster Nino has a gang who call themselves Cash Money Brothers. They get into the crack business and not before long they make a million dollars every week. A cop, Scotty, is after them. He tries to get into the gang by letting an ex-drug addict infiltrate the gang, but the attempt fails miserably. The only thing that remains is that Scotty himself becomes a drug pusher. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It was a time that there was a new gangster in......... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, drug content, sensuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 March 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Cidade do Novo Paraíso  »

Box Office

Budget:

$8,500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$47,624,253 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mario Van Peebles had formed a friendship with Clint Eastwood when the pair made Heartbreak Ridge (1986). When Van Peebles took the "New Jack City" screenplay to Warner Bros., the studio was interested in the material, but weren't keen on having an unknown as the director/lead actor. Eastwood personally vouched for Van Peebles and told the Warner brass to "give the kid a shot". The success of the film launched Van Peebles's directing career. See more »

Goofs

Nino's crew has already seized the Carter Apartments for their operations, but later he's still talking about taking them over at the New Year's Eve party when Frankie Needles interrupts him. See more »

Quotes

Pooky: Scottie, help me - I'm gonna die!
[peers into camera in despair]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Notorious (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

I WANNA SEX YOU UP
Written and Produced by Dr. Freeze
Performed by Color Me Badd
Courtesy of Giant Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fast paced ghetto gangsta fantasy with an important message
31 July 2005 | by (Vulcan) – See all my reviews

Van Peebles directs a great cast in this detached-from-reality film about a truly evil drug-lord with a head for business and murder (Snipes), and a tough, street-wise pair of cops (Ice-T and Judd Nelson) hell-bent on bringing him down. The message is an important one - slogans are not going to win the war on drugs, and the way the message is carried in the film is more subtle than you might expect. The end of the film makes the point very clear, and I won't discuss it because I do not write spoilers. Like many of the more intelligent films made in the early 1990s, New Jack City is also an indictment of the euphoria of the Reagan years - telling the true story of what that time was like for those living from paycheck to paycheck, or trying to live without one, and dealing with the invisible "war on drugs" which had little to no effect on anybody in our inner-city neighborhoods.

Snipes, Ice-T, Allen Payne and Chris Rock give stand-out performances, and the rest of the cast provide excellent support. The film also stars New York City, and definitely has an NYC flavor (seasoned with more than a pinch of Hollywood). The cinematography is a little breathless - not unusual for the genre but in this case a bit extreme. The script is good, but perhaps too dense with rich plot details. And the editing provides a few pacing problems toward the middle of the film which, combined with the over-abundance of subplots, detract from the development of the main themes. The soundtrack is excellent - including a nice mix of hip-hop, rap, contemporary soul, and dance music - all blended nicely with the imagery of the film. Van Peebles style is well developed in this film, but I felt that some aspects of the plot were a little too outrageous for the seriousness of the film's message, and I fear that the message may have been lost on many of the film's viewers.

Overall, this is a good film. Entertaining and thoughtful, but definitely not for everybody.


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