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Chi-Raq (2015)

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A modern day adaptation of the ancient Greek play Lysistrata by Aristophanes, set against the backdrop of gang violence in Chicago.

Director:

Spike Lee
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Popularity
3,514 ( 1,359)
5 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nick Cannon ... Chi-Raq
Teyonah Parris ... Lysistrata
Wesley Snipes ... Cyclops
Angela Bassett ... Miss Helen
Samuel L. Jackson ... Dolmedes
John Cusack ... Father Mike Corridan
Jennifer Hudson ... Irene
David Patrick Kelly ... General King Kong
D.B. Sweeney ... Mayor McCloud
Dave Chappelle ... Morris
Steve Harris ... Old Duke
Harry Lennix ... Commissioner Blades
Tony Fitzpatrick ... Chief Riptide
Anya Engel-Adams ... Rasheeda
Ebony Joy ... Marcy
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Storyline

After the shooting death of a child hit by a stray bullet, a group of women led by Lysistrata organize against the on-going violence in Chicago's Southside creating a movement that challenges the nature of race, sex and violence in America and around the world.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No peace, no piece. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Musical

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual content including dialogue, nudity, language, some violence and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 December 2016 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Чирак See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,198,356, 6 December 2015, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,647,377, 24 January 2016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Wake up" is a popular tagline used throughout many of Spike Lee's films, including "School Daze" (1988). Samuel L. Jackson repeats "wake up" at the end of "Chi-Raq" (2015) similarly to Laurence Fishburne in "School Daze". Samuel L. Jackson appeared in the movie "School Daze" alongside Laurence Fishburne. (Just do not confuse the two actors.) See more »

Goofs

At the end when the peace signing ceremony is being conducted all the parties involved are on one side of the signing table which is in front of them between the seats of the amphitheater with all the visible seats empty. See more »

Quotes

Father Mike Corridan: Guns have become part of America's wardrobe.
See more »

Connections

Version of Lisístrata (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Contradiction
Written by Kortney Pollard, Sunny Ibrahim, and Jhené Aiko (as Jhené Aiko Efuru Chilombo)
Published by Mali Music Notes/6 Kolbert Drive/Sony/ATV Tunes LLC (ASCAP), Stellar Songs Ltd/Sony ATV Music Publishing and Songs of Universal Inc (BMI)
Performed by Mali Music
Produced by Sunny Ibrahim for Avant Guard Music
Used courtesy of ByStorm Entertainment/RCA Records, by arrangement with Sony Music Entertainment
See more »

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User Reviews

 
At least he tried
17 July 2016 | by SnoopyStyleSee all my reviews

Chicago is referred to as Chi-Raq. American losses in Afghanistan from 2001 to today amounts to 2349, in Iraq from 2003 to 2011 amounts to 4424, and Chicago from 2001 to 2015 with 7356 murders. Dolmedes (Samuel L. Jackson) refers to ancient Greek playwright Aristophanes' play Lysistrata. Chi-Raq (Nick Cannon) is a rapper. Lysistrata (Teyonah Parris) is his girlfriend. Cyclops (Wesley Snipes) is a local thug. Irene (Jennifer Hudson) suffers the lost of her child from a stray bullet. Lysistrata leads a campaign by the women to withhold sex until the men stop the violence.

Spike Lee takes on a tough subject. The 'solution' is poetic and way too simplistic. I get the allure of pairing the classic Greek play with the present day reality. If nothing else, he's agitating for a solution to this intractable problem. He's not giving up. As for the movie itself, I have a few problems with the cast. John Cusack does not fit as a priest. I accept his Chicago connection and his need to help with this issue. He has never played this type of role and it's very odd to see him here. The General King Kong character is even worst. He is ridiculous. I don't know what Spike Lee is trying to say about the military and what connection they have with the murder rate. On the other hand, Jennifer Hudson's presence is powerful. Overall, this is a mix bag but at least, Spike Lee is willing to tackle the issue like he did so many years ago.


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