5.9/10
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129 user 16 critic

Belly (1998)

A pair of violent Men have spiritual awakenings.

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(story), (story) | 2 more credits »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Knowledge (as Power)
Louie Rankin ...
Stan Drayton ...
Wise (as Stanley Drayton)
James Parris ...
...
...
Kurt Loder
Ben Chavis ...
Rev. Saviour (as Minister Benjamin F. Muhammed)
...
Big
Jay Black ...
John 'B.J.' Bryant ...
Thug #1
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Storyline

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 Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Money, power, respect... but who's got your back?

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, language, sexuality and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

4 November 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Könnyű pénz  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,454,776 (USA) (6 November 1998)

Gross:

$9,630,169 (USA) (22 January 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Method Man's character's name, Shameek, comes from the introduction to "7th Chamber" from the Wu-Tang Clan's 1993 debut, Enter the 36 Chambers. See more »

Quotes

Tommy 'Buns' Bundy: What?
Knowledge: What the fuck you mean, what?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Lord of War (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

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,
LLC/Copyright Control
Courtesy of Def Jam Records
Nas and Nature appear courtesy of Columbia Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
All Hype, No Substance to this Lackluster, Unoriginal Movie
7 July 1999 | by (Minnesota) – See all my reviews

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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