Aspiring emcee DJay works the angles to get his first record made with help from assorted people in his Memphis 'hood. And when he hears that hip-hop superstar Skinny Black is heading to his area, he throws together a supreme hustle to grab Skinny's attention. Written by
There are numerous references to Memphis-based musicians in the film: The character of Shelby was named after Shelby Bryant, a singer-songwriter from Memphis. In one scene, Shelby is wearing a T-shirt with the logo of Sam Phillips's Memphis Recording Service studio. In another scene, Shelby wears a T-shirt of Lucero, a local country-rock band. Many of the studio musicians who played for Stax Records, the legendary Memphis-based record label, play on the original score. Isaac Hayes, who plays Arnel, recorded for Stax Records. The cover of the 1974 Stax album "Victim of the Joke?" by Memphian David Porter is stapled to DJay's work table. Otis Redding, who also recorded for Stax Records, is mentioned in one scene. Al Green's song "Jesus is Waiting" is heard during one scene. Memphis native Josey Scott of the band Saliva, appears as a store owner. Members of the popular rap group Three 6 Mafia appear in the film. Paul Beauregard plays DJay's neighbor and Jordan Houston plays Skinny Black's brother. Haystak, Free Sol and Al Kapone are local rappers who appear in the film. See more »
When Shelby is laying down the piano loop for "Whoop that Trick", he is shown first playing it in the middle of the keyboard, but in the next shot, the position of his hand has changed to the bottom of the keyboard, while the notes stay the same. See more »
Sometimes I feel like... like I talked such a good game when we was young, man. About my own studio and my own label, that... shit, DJay, now I'm just payin' rent, man. This shit right here gotta work. It gotta work, man, 'cause it ain't over for me.
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"Hustle & Flow" is a very strong directorial from writer/director Craig Brewer, and it is very worthy of the buzz that it has been generating for the last couple of months. I got to see it last night at an AFI screening at Arclight Cinemas in Los Angeles, and the audience really reacted positively to what they saw. The story is similar in some respects to "8 Mile," but it is a far better movie (and "8 Mile" was pretty good too). It features a tremendous performance by Terrence Howard as a low level pimp who suddenly breaks out of his dark surroundings to become a respected rapper. Craig had commented that had he made this movie within the studio system, he probably never would have been able to cast Terrence in the movie, and that would have been tragic. Anthony Anderson is also excellent as his friend/producer, and there is also Taryn Manning who is very strong in a role as a prostitute who wants to do more with her life. It's a movie with a lot of heart and integrity, and will appeal to anyone who has ever aspired to something with all their heart, regardless of the road blocks ahead. Here's hoping that "Hustle & Flow" gets the audience it truly deserves!
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