6.5/10
3,208
31 user 18 critic

Beat Street (1984)

PG | | Drama, Music | 8 June 1984 (USA)
An aspiring DJ, from the South Bronx, and his best friend, a promoter, try to get into show business by exposing people to hip-hop music and culture.

Director:

Stan Lathan

Writers:

Steven Hager (story) (as Steve Hager), Andrew Davis (screenplay) (as Andy Davis) | 2 more credits »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rae Dawn Chong ... Tracy Carlson
Guy Davis Guy Davis ... Kenny 'Double K' Kirkland
Jon Chardiet ... Ramon
Leon W. Grant Leon W. Grant ... Chollie
Saundra Santiago ... Carmen Cararro
Robert Taylor Robert Taylor ... Lee Kirkland
Mary Alice ... Cora (as Mary Alice Smith)
Shawn Elliott ... Domingo
Jim Borrelli Jim Borrelli ... Monte
Dean Elliott Dean Elliott ... Henri
Franc Reyes Franc Reyes ... Luis
Tonya Pinkins ... Angela
Lee Chamberlin ... Alicia
Antonia Rey ... Flora
Duane Jones ... Robert
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Storyline

An upbeat, lets-put-on-a-show musical about the wonders of hip-hop music and culture that tells the story of Kenny, a young hip-hop artist living in the rough slums of the Bronx with his younger brother Lee and their mother Cora. Kenny dreams of making it big as a disc jockey and playing in the most swank of Manhattan nightclubs, the Roxy. Into their lives comes Tracy, a composer and assistant choreographer from the City College of New York, who inspires him to try to continue his dream while romance begins to grow between them, despite coming from different neighborhoods and worlds. Meanwhile, Lee is part of a break-dancing crew set on dominating the scene of their street. The rest of their friends include Ramon, a graffiti artist determined to spread his painting to every subway car in the city while dealing with his girlfriend Carmen and Chollie, a fellow disc jockey who becomes Kenny's manager after he lands him a gig at a Bronx club. Many hip-hop groups, electro artists, break ... Written by matt-282

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Get down, brother, shuffle those feet, shake a little boogie to the sound of that beat. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Music

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 June 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Perfect Beat See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,218,040, 10 June 1984

Gross USA:

$16,595,791

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$16,595,791
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Orion Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It was the producers' idea for the main cast to wear Kangol hats and Puma sneakers all throughout production of the film even though many of the dancers felt that it wasn't authentic. See more »

Goofs

When Lee first starts dancing at the Roxy battle, he has a knee pad on his left knee. As he starts his backspin, it disappears. See more »

Quotes

Tracy Carlson: I don't even know why I'm with you?
Kenny 'Double K' Kirkland: I got it figured out. You are the missionary and I am the native.
See more »

Alternate Versions

UK theatrical prints were edited by four seconds to obtain a "PG" rating. The 1986 and 2002 video releases were uncut and received a "15" classification, though in 2008 the rating was downgraded to "12," again without cuts. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Boondocks: Riley Wuz Here (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Strangers in a Strange World
Performed by Jenny Burton and Patrick Jude
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Snapshot of Old School Hip-hop
10 February 2003 | by vvanpoSee all my reviews

The Harry Belafonte-produced "Beat Street" captured a slice of hip-hop back when it was dancing, graffiti, DJing and rapping not just rapping. The story line is hokey but the music performances and dancing are great. Afrika Bambaataa, Kool Herc, Kool Moe Dee and Melle Mel are among the artists that make an appearance. A decent way to check out hip-hop before NWA spoiled it all.


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