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Carmen: A Hip Hopera (2001)

PG-13 | | Musical, Drama | TV Movie 8 May 2001
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Based on Bizet's classic opera and its all African American musical counterpart Carmen Jones, Carmen a Hiphopera is a modern retelling of the story of the tragic gypsy Carmen. The setting ... See full summary »

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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Hill
... Carmen Brown (as Beyoncé Knowles)
... Lt. Miller (as Mos Def)
... Rasheeda
... Nikki
... Fortune Teller
... Narrator
... Pockets
... Jalil (as Lil' Bow Wow)
... Blaze
... Caela
... Nathaniel
... Sgt. Tony Porter
... Lou
... Nori
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Storyline

Based on Bizet's classic opera and its all African American musical counterpart Carmen Jones, Carmen a Hiphopera is a modern retelling of the story of the tragic gypsy Carmen. The setting has been taken from the hots streets of Barcelona and is now in scorching urban Philadelphia. This time Carmen Brown is an aspiring actress who in her own words 'leaves the whole town speechless.' Her sultry looks and carefree confidence attract the attention of everyone from crooked cop Luietenant Miller to famous rapper Blaze. However Carmen has eyes on the one man she can't have- Seargeant Derrick Hill who is engaged. Yet nothing stops Carmen Brown getting what she wants- except perhaps a trip to LA and an ominous tarot cards prophecy. Written by LadyN1

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Genres:

Musical | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, sensuality, and drug content | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

8 May 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Carmen Brown  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is the second major African-American adaptation of the opera, the first being the 1943 Broadway musical Carmen Jones and its 1954 Academy Award nominated and box office hit film adaptation. See more »

Quotes

Blaze: Hello, I'm Blaze. But my friends call me Case...
[Carmen cuts him off]
Carmen: I know who you are. I'm Carmen.
Blaze: Nice to meet you.
Carmen: Nice to meet you.
Blaze: So what's a fine lady like you doing in Philly? Small town masquerading as a big city.
Carmen: I won't be here for long. See I have dreams... plans.
Blaze: I wanna hear about 'em.
Carmen: [sucks teeth] Pssh. No, you don't.
Blaze: No, really. I'm interested.
[...]
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Connections

Remake of Carmen Jones (1954) See more »

Soundtracks

Hill's Prison Song
Written by Sekani Williams
Performed by Mekhi Phifer, Jermaine Dupri and Lil' Bow Wow
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User Reviews

Fresh and inventive
21 February 2003 | by See all my reviews

I really liked this one. I thought they did a great job of updating the story to the present day in a clever, believable way. I'm not a particular fan of hip-hop, either. There were some really clever lyrics (my favorite was the argument scene), yet the original score does underlie the whole thing. I liked it much better than "Carmen Jones," the 50s version of "Carmen" which degenerates into Broadway schlock at times.

The man who played the evil cop did a really terrific job, and I hear he's usually a singer, not an actor. The supporting roles were really well interpreted and the people who played them well-chosen. I very much enjoyed the fortune teller, who seemed really ominous with his voodoo/Jamaican aura. The leads shined.

My main gripe with the whole thing was the camera work, which was rather distracting at times. For example, there is a meta-commentary at the beginning and end of the movie, a rap done by a woman, and the camera constantly changes angles and splits into multiple images of the artist. I'd have much preferred a straight shot so that I could pay attention to what she's saying and her body language, which were good.

Overall, I loved it and will see it again.


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