Karl's Opinion Page

Slam

Written 11/23/98

Rating: 7 out of 10

Slam is a film about ghetto life, prison life, rapping, and poetry. Note that both of those come in pairs, and are generally indistinguishable in this film; prison life and ghetto life are as joined as rapping and poetry.

It was a good film, though the ghetto slang was often hard to understand, and the cinematography opted to go for the zoom in-and-out of faux documentary filming, which seriously detracted. It had only moderate sympathy for the characters, and was a bit hard to believe at times, but certainly handled an interesting and important subject well.

For Those Who Have Seen It

You know, one of the big reasons rap and the ghetto lifestyle plays in Peoria is because it is fun. It's fun to be the baddest motherfucker, fun to pop caps in some nigger who's been jocking you. Our boys in this film never seemed to believe that, and I don't believe that they are trapped in a situation not of their making, and are willing to lay down the guns because of the obvious stupidity of it all.

So it wasn't very realistic, despite having real inmates for the prison scenes. The poetry contest was fun, tho.