I didn’t know what to expect with this movie. I’ve read the mixed reviews. I knew John Singleton walked away from the project cos the folks were being shady. I’d read Jada saying that certain things didn’t happen. I’d read they sued his mom for the rights to do the movie. Does the family get proceeds from this? I’ve read that Mama Afeni made sure Pac’s estate/trust was protected before she transitioned.
After seeing the movie, I don’t have much to say actually other than I hope John Singleton makes a Tupac movie.
It’s not that it was terrible, it’s just that it fell short, and at times it felt too preachy, like a PSA and heavy-handed on proving a point vs moving the story along. At times, it felt like a Lifetime movie. Sometimes, dude felt like Pac, and sometimes, he missed the mark. Weird thing was that the casting, as far as looks, was great, but the acting wasn’t always there.
It was good to see that Tia Mowry’s husband, Cory Hardrict, landed a gig.
The Oscar goes to Danai Gurira for her role as Pac’s mom, Afeni Shakur. She put her whole foot in that role. Yaaaassssss, character actress! She was giving me a mixture of Lupita Nyong’o and Viola Davis, which is interesting because Lupita was amazing in Gurira’s Broadway play, Eclipsed. Gurira as Mama Afeni kept me engaged and wanting to see more of her interaction with her son. That relationship is what I wanted to see more of and more of his relationship with his sister, Sekyiwa.
One of the most blackity black lines was “You just gon’ lay the luscious on me in front of Mama,” and Afeni responds, “She got a white mama.” H I L A R I O U S.
Two other poignant lines were:
They’ll give you, all the tools to destroy yourself…
Our family crest is cotton.
I don’t know how I felt about Shakespeare being a thru-line. Huh. Interesting. Meh.
Oh and, the part with Snoop on the plane and them not “addressing,” him was out of character for how Pac and even Suge Knight had been portrayed in the movie.
Kidada Jones had too much of a role in the movie.
In general, I realized that I’m over seeing movies about Black folks getting screwed by the music industry, making uninformed decisions or making decisions under distress is heartwrenching. If it’s true that Pac had everything, including his home, was tied up in Death Row, that sucks! OVAH IT!
Lastly, as a whole the script wasn’t good. The writing and storyline had loopholes. All over the place, trying to do too much in a short period of time but with no depth, no authentic deep dive.