Jeff Cole is a recent graduate of the Cincinnati police academy who dreams of working undercover. His wish is granted and through success is given the task of taking down state-wide crack ... See full summary »
Story of a promising high school basketball star and his relationships with two brothers, one a drug dealer and the other a former basketball star fallen on hard times and now employed as a security guard.
Tommy Brown and his friend Sincere are gangsters who have learned how to make a good living by dealing drugs and pulling armed robberies. Tommy and Sincere have been able to move out of the ghetto in Queens where they were raised and relocate to an upscale section of Manhattan; they would seem to have it made, but both realize that their lives are headed toward a dead end. Sincere begins getting in touch with his African roots and tries to convince his girlfriend Tionne that they should emigrate to the Motherland, while Tommy has a religious awakening and joins the Nation of Islam. Written by
I Wanna Live
Performed by Braveheart
Written by Nas, Nature, Tone and Braveheart
Produced by Tone & Poke for Track Masters Entertainment, Inc.
Published by Zomba Enterprises, Inc./Ill Will Music, Inc.
(Administered by Zomba Enterprises Inc.); Slam U Well Productions/Jelly's Jams, LLC/12 & Under Music/Jumping Bean Songs,
Courtesy of Def Jam Records
Nas and Nature appear courtesy of Columbia Records See more »
All Hype, No Substance to this Lackluster, Unoriginal Movie
This movie leaves few positive things in its favor. The one positive aspect that does come to mind is the good turns by DMX and Taral Hicks. DMX is not a bad actor, and Taral Hicks gives a truly inspired performance as his devoted, no-BS girlfriend. T-Boz and NAS could really use some schooling and seem horribly out of place.
The whole movie is nothing more than an urban rip-off of the superior, but nonetheless highly overrated, "Scarface." First-time film director Hype Williams makes some poor cinematographic choices that, though they may work in videos, do not pay off in a feature-length project. The colors are murky and dark, and many of these scenes seem just plain empty; no aesthetic value to them at all.
The "plot" of the movie involves Nas and DMX struggling with living a good, decent life that may lead them nowhere or taking the more dangerous road of drug dealing, guns, and money. Hmmm...which would you take? Apparently, they haven't seen the 5 million other movies that have dealt with the same subject matter. If they had, they would have known that drugs, guns, and fast women are just so gosh darned evil. They would have also known that in the end, they would see the light from a good-hearted preacher man who would show them the evil of their ways. Duh!
Oh yeah, and the drug-lord with the heavy island accent is completely unintelligible. What's his point in this movie? Oops, I forgot - it's to add at least one plot point to the otherwise pointless drudgery that is "Belly." My guess is the writers got their storyline AND dialogue from the back of an inner city anti-drug pamphlet. Give me a break!
If you want to see a real gangster movie, see "Goodfellas" instead. It's a lot more original in its story-telling, and the characters are far more believable and entertaining. If urban dramas are what you're looking for, rent the excellent "Boyz N the Hood." It's a lot more inspiring and is filled with rich imagery and great story-telling and direction.
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