A former drug lord returns from prison determined to wipe out all his competition and distribute the profits of his operations to New York's poor and lower classes in this stylish and ultra violent modern twist on Robin Hood.
A cab driver finds himself the hostage of an engaging contract killer as he makes his rounds from hit to hit during one night in Los Angeles. He must find a way to save both himself and one last victim.
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
When Kareem takes Pookie to talk to Gee Money about a promotion, the camera cuts between being in the room and looking through the wire that Pookie is wearing. Gee Money is on the phone during this exchange and his hands switch positions wildly between the shots. See more »
STAR RATING:*****Unmissable****Very Good***Okay**You Could Go Out For A Meal Instead*Avoid At All Costs
New Jack City is The Untouchables for the black community right down to the last tee.Wesley Snipes is playing Robert De Niro's part as Al Capone,while Mario Van Peebles is the Elliot Ness of the story,making for a black man's Kevin Costner (what a concept).As the director of the film as well,Peebles has also updated it to the more modern time of 1986.And the film he has crafted is an impressive tale of the futility of anti-drug initiatives in the US,gang violence,dealer rivalry and hypocrisy.
Peebles' direction is stylish,if a little uneven,and the film has a cool visual style to it,with catchy camera angles and a few enjoyable viserical shots,kind of ahead of it's time in the pre-Matrix days of 1991.This is matched by a cool,absorbing hip-hop/R'nB soundtrack that plays through a lot of the scenes in the film,adding a believable feel to the black crime scene that is being portrayed.There is,of course,a heavy amount of violence and bad language in the film,so any extreme prudes should probably steer clear,but this is ultimately necessary to convey the reality at the heart of the story,and not in any way immensely gratuitous.
On the performances front,Snipes is ideally cast as the cool-as-ice gangster crimelord,practically playing him in his sleep,while fine support comes from Peebles,Ice-T and Judd Nelson as the men in charge of bringing him down.A good few years before he started over-working his flamboyant funnyman act,another surprisingly great,and non-funny performance comes from Chris Rock as a young junkie desperate to kick the habit and help the cops stop Snipes and his drug dealing operations.
It's similarity to and feel of being a remake of The Untouchables for black people ultimately does underwhelm it somewhat,but it is still nevertheless a fairly brilliant film that is distinctly aimed at the problem it is targeting and is very distinctly 1991.****
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