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Menace II Society
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Reviews & Ratings for
Menace II Society More at IMDbPro »

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47 out of 50 people found the following review useful:

powerfully good

Author: Special-K88
28 September 2002

Extremely brutal, but gripping and compelling story of a volatile, alienated young teenager (Turner) growing up in the violent atmosphere of the L.A. Watts District and—against the advice of family and friends—makes no effort to transcend the harshness and ignorance of his surroundings, instead choosing to head down a dead-end path. Violent, almost unbearable at times, but faultlessly acted by the cast, and filled with powerful, authentic scenes. Tate is an absolute powerhouse as Turner's younger, impulsive, and extremely cold-blooded pal. Obviously not for all tastes, but a monumental achievement regardless, thanks to a superior cast of actors. ***½

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39 out of 49 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant movie

Author: Oliver Blomqvist (oblomqvist@hotmail.com) from helsinki, finland
16 March 2000



Menace was a brilliant film. There are many reasons to it, but I think what makes it so special is it's sense of style. It proves effectively that a gritty street-drama doesn't have to look bad in order to be realistic. Instead of using hand held cams and grainy film the Hughes' shoot their film with style, influenced by John Woo, and action-comics.

The violence used is also excessive and very graphic. There are brutal beatings as well as bloody shootings, all shot much better than your average action-movie. Like as in Dead Presidents, the directors aren't afraid of over-doing anything. Through slow-motion and impressive camera manoeuvering they're making great, exhilarating action.

Well, besides the violence the movie is great in many other ways. The shootings and bloodlettings are just to make it more realistic, which is pretty much the goal of the movie. In heartbreaking detail the main characters narrate us through youth criminality, drug-dealing, racism and a lot of other nasty stuff. The voice-over works really well, making Menace a sort of black "Goodfellas".

The story is great, in some points resembling some greek tragedy, with a storyline used successfully in other movies like Carlito's Way, Goodfellas, American History X and many others. It's about changing your life in time, before it's too late. If you don't change in time, all your past sins will come back to you. The movie is hilarious, sad, suspenseful and very educational for those who think there is racial equality in USA.

The Hughes' are young, aggressive and untouchable film-makers who intend to show you the real world, and do it with style.

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32 out of 42 people found the following review useful:

One of the best movies in 1993

Author: Gogetad from Bad Homburg, Germany
17 October 2004

Menace 2 Society is in my opinion the best "Ghetto Gangster"-Movie of all time. So powerful, so strong. Perfectly showing the hard life young black people go through in the ghetto. The main-characters are Caine, and O-Dog. Caine, is not the typical gangster, he had a very hard childhood, with a dealer as father and a junkie as mother, but he doesn't want to live this kind of live and tries to change it. O-Dog is the opposite, a young man who's afraid of nothing and always has trouble with the justice. The movie shows us the road that both, including there friends pass in this strange world of drugs, violence.

The best film the Hugh-Brother ever made, simply a must see, you will love it!!!

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34 out of 47 people found the following review useful:

The Best Hood Film I Have Ever Seen

Author: Big_Captain_Splatter from C-Town
9 October 2004

If you like action dramas, this is definitely the film for you. I have watched this film several times since I bought it, and I don't do that with many movies. It shows what it is really like for teenagers growing up in the ghetto.

The movie takes place in LA, where Caine, O-Dog, Sharif, and the rest of they're crew trying to grow up in the Ghetto without getting shot. It deals with everything that is happening in the world with teens in the hood: Pregnancy, Drive-by's, Drug Addiction, and many other things.

What I like about this film, is that it is exactly what it's supposed to be. It does not show people getting shot every 2 minutes and showing the kids smoking weed in every scene, because it's not like that in real life. This shows exactly how everything goes down. Nothing more, nothing less.

Check it out. You can get it at Wal-Mart for a good price.

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25 out of 34 people found the following review useful:

One of the best movies in 1993

Author: Gogetad from Bad Homburg, Germany
17 October 2004

Menace 2 Society is definitely the best "Ghetto Gangsta"-Movie of all time. So powerful, so strong. Perfectly showing the hard life young black people go through in the ghetto. The main-characters are Caine, and O-Dog. Caine, is not the typical gangsta, he had a very hard childhood, with a dealer as father and a junkie as mother, but he doesn't want to live this kind of live and trys to change it. O-Dog is the opposite, a young man who's afraid of nothing and always has trouble with the justice. The movie shows us the road that both, including there friends do in this strange world of drugs, violence and poverty.

The best film the Hugh-Brother ever made, simply a must see, you will love it!!!

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28 out of 40 people found the following review useful:

Shockingly Perfect

10/10
Author: jadavis-ca from San Jose, California, USA
30 August 2004

This movie is so good, I remember specifically the first time I saw it.

I was 17 years old, hanging out with friends, doing the things 17 year olds and the characters in the movie do, in a friend's backyard. On our way out to a movie theater, I ran up to the entertainment room to grab my jacket. As I entered, I heard the first line of "Menace" from a television which had been left on. In the 30 seconds it took me to put on my jacket, I was drawn into the flick.

As the first scene came to a close, my buddies came looking for me. It didn't take long for them to realize that we wouldn't be going anywhere.

At such an age this movie shocked and excited me. It left me in awe and on the edge of tears.

In my early twenties (and after I'd seen it several times), the movie made me laugh out loud. The clever dialog, even in tenuous situations, is genius. Cheeseburgers, anyone?

Now in my late twenties, I consider this a classic. Take your other gang movies and throw them out the window. Boyz n the Hood is the only one that comes close and that takes itself way too seriously. Everything else is just an imitation of this perfectly woven tale.

As long as you can tolerate the violence and not-so-clean language, check this one out. It's simply brilliant.

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25 out of 35 people found the following review useful:

This is what is!

10/10
Author: bubsy-3 from NYC, NY
17 August 2004

I saw this film the weekend it opened. At the time I was 33, a white male living in NYC. When I went to the theater, I noticed that most of the audience was Black and in their late teens. For some reason, they felt that this was a good "date" movie. When the movie began, and the Korean Grocery scene was presented, the audience went wild with comments like "Yeah, Yeah, Kill them!!". I must say I got a little nervous. But, as the movie progressed, I got absorbed in it. I liked Cane and I even liked O'Dog. When the movie ended, I started crying. I was embarassed. Then I noticed that the Black teenage guys around me were crying too. I applaud the Hughes Brothers for making a movie that is able to connect with so many people. I still cry while watching it on video. "Do you care if you live or die?"

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16 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Menacingly Powerful, and Gritty Urban Drama

9/10
Author: FrankBooth_DeLarge from someplace
16 September 2005

Menace II Society is much more than your typical hood movie. It tells the story of young Caine Lawson, a teen growing up in Watts, California.

The opening briefly shows Caine getting caught up in a grocery store shooting with his friend. This was a chilling way to open the movie, as it shows how easy it is for someone in the ghetto to get caught up in the moment and kill someone. During the opening credits, we see footage of the Watts riots that took place during the 60's. Caine narrates the story of his life, explaining how after the riots, drugs came into effect, and affected his home life as a child. After loosing his parents on at the hands of drugs, he was sent to live with his Grandparents. His Grandparents love him, but they struggled to raise him and tried their hardest to keep him out of trouble.

Not too long into the movie, after we learn about Caine's early life, we see him graduate from High School. He hopes to leave the life of violence that surrounds him in his neighborhood. After falling victim to a violent car jacking, he is brought into violence and crime himself. As the story progresses, and things spiral downward for Caine, he ends up in a hell of a jam and tries to make a way out of it all.

This is an incredible movie. It perfectly balances the ugly crime life and murder of tough inner city neighborhoods, Caine's own personal troubles, police brutality, and drugs.

This is a powerful movie with a great story. It has a good message, but in some ways, I thought the film Boyz N the Hood showed the message in a better way. Menace II Society is more focused on the crime involved in inner cities, where as Boyz N the Hood focuses more on the family life of the characters.

This is an excellent film that you should see if you ever get the chance. It has a good message, and it has some very moving moments in it.

If you enjoyed this, I also recommend Boyz N the Hood, and you'll probably enjoy the Wayans brothers' spoof, Don't be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood.

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12 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

An amazing debut for the Hughes brothers

8/10
Author: Agent10 from Tucson, AZ
22 May 2002

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Hughes brothers made quite a splash with this film, making one of the best inner city films since Boys in the Hood. While I didn't care much for the voice overs, the ending to the film proved to be bone chilling, especially after becoming so close to the characters who were killed. I felt Larenz Tate did an excellent job in his role as O-Dog. While too many people focused on the violence in the movie, it really wasn't the focal point. It was really more about how the characters were conditioned, how they became used to the concept to random violence. A solid film with some great performances.

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18 out of 24 people found the following review useful:

A Powerful and Great film from The Hughes Brothers

9/10
Author: OriginalMovieBuff21 from United States
2 October 2004

Menace II Society is a film of power and a desperate killing spree just in a little neighborhood. The film was very good, on all levels this is sure the best Hughes Brothers film. I've only seen Dead Presidents and From Hell, which I thought were both good movies, but this is The Hughes Brothers best film and this is so far the best ghetto film I've ever seen. There was some flaws but the movie makes it out like there really isn't any. The acting was good, Tyrin Turner, I've never really heard of and Larenz Tate I've see in Dead Presidents. The action was good and the movie was extremely powerful. Overall, this was a very neat ghetto film by The Hughes Brothers.

Hedeen's outlook: 9/10 ***+ A-

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