Oh, are you tired of hearing me wax poetic about how the age of various hip hop-related items and how old this makes me feel? Well if you are, I’ll have to apologize in advance, because that is exactly what I’m about to do. Again.
Last week it was 3rd Bass’ 2nd and final album, Derelicts of Dialect, that was turning the big 2-0, and now, come to find out, seminal “hip hop” movie Boyz N The Hood is also two decades old. Trailer goes here:
What to say about Boyz N The Hood really? First off, if you’ve never seen it, see it ASAP. Sure, anyone interested in hip hop at that time had already spent some time vicariously living the gangbanger lifestyler through N.W.A., Ice Cube, King Tee, and pretty much any other LA-based rapper, but here it was in full-on melodramatic living colour! And Ice Cube was acting in it! If o’Shea’s turn as Doughboy isn’t in the Top 3 rapper-turned-actor performances I’d be amazed. Plus it featured Cuba Gooding Jr.’s, ahem, star-making turn as the conflicted Tre Styles. There may have been better gang-banging movies after this, but this was the one that made everyone, both hip hop fans and the mainstream alike, sit up and take notice.
That stuff is all well and good, but here at the hill, there’s but one person from Boyz N The Hood that gets repeatedly referenced: Furious Styles. Deep, intense and wiser than wisest, Tre’s dad, played by Laurence Fishburne, knows both the answers and the questions. He tries to school Tre and his friends throughout the film and guide them towards the path to righteousness, but as kids are wont to do, they have to learn the hard way. Still, his name is Furious Styles, and you have to admit that’s a really good name!
Anyhoo, as per the times, despite this being as hip hop a movie as you can get, the soundtrack still featured plenty of R&B type stuff for the oldsters (see, Right Thing, Do The for another example), but there are some great songs on there. Cube’s breakneck party starter How To Survive In South Central, Eiht & CMW’s coming of age tale Growin’ Up In The Hood, a rather solid remix of Main Source’s classic Just A Friendly Game of Baseball, and another west cost tale from hill fave Kam. Some great songs from a classic flick for your Monday, enjoy.
Video:: Comptons Most Wanted - Growing Up In The Hood