- Movie Review:
- Michael A. Pinckney
Two New York City detectives have just been assigned to the biggest homicide case their division has ever seen. They must track down a serial killer with an appetite for some of hip-hop's biggest strs. As the detectives dive into this case, they uncover a complex web of murder, sex and money that leads them to the killer's next victim. They must get to him before it's too late--only then will they be able to catch their culprit.
Someone is killing high-profile rap musicians.
You’re Nobody Til Somebody Kills You (2012) – is an unique hip-hop themed horror/thriller and an interesting title that originates from a song written by Christopher George Wallace aka The Notorious B.I.G, an America rapper and central figure in the East Cost hip hop scene in the early 90′s. The mystery surrounding his death may have been fodder for the subject of this film–the mysterious deaths of high profile rap musicians. Rappers Doug E. Fresh and Big Daddy Kane make cameos in the film, but they aren’t main contributors to the plot. However, there are numerous actors featured that have been on high profile shows such as NYPD Blue, The Wire, and Entourage. Admitting that I didn’t have high expectations for this film, I found myself immensely entertained. The unintentionally hilarious plot, the unusually catching nicknames (Manchild), and the engaging musical score was just enough to set the film to a new level of B-movie awesomeness–if it weren’t for the acting performances; although the performances did add to the film’s campy appeal.
Two New York detectives Johnson (James McDaniel) and his partner Francelli (Michael Mosley), are star investigators of the NYPD. Both are assigned to the recent hip-hop murders and their chief believes that Johnson and his partner are the only ones that can crack the case. Francelli’s demeanor is disturbingly cheerful for someone working on a murder case–he is laughing and joking about the quarrels that went on between rival musicians and laughing in between the gruesome murders. Unbeknownst to Detective Johnson, Francelli was investigating the hip-hop murder case almost completely solo for the entire film, and only notifying his partner later on. This led to predictable gaps in the plot, and awkward event timing.
Manchild (Nashawn Kearse) is the hottest rapper on the scene and eventually finds himself the latest target of the killer. Marcus, Manchild’s real name, saw the rap music industry as a way to escape the violence of his old neighborhood. Sorry to say that this wasn’t a promising option. What more, Marcus is a nice guy, surrounded by people who obviously aren’t concerned about his well being. He has the potential to be murdered, and neither his record company or his business manager thought fit to provide him with security. Instead, are in denial and downplays any attempt on his life. The film also featured romantic interests and glimpses into his and Johnson’s family life that seemed more like filler material and did not specifically tie in well with the other events occurring in the film.
The murders–in short–were depicted quite hysterically. There really wasn’t any gore in the film and the killer’s methods were hardly extraordinary. Nobody til Somebody Kills You is successful in maintaining the identity of the murderer. I suspected that the hip-hop executive mogul, Marcell Mann (Jacinto Taras Riddick) was the killer, as the man was the epitome of fear and power. Cleverly, director Pinckney decided to pick a suspicious, yet mostly random individual, and an ending that is nonsensical at best. If you are expecting it to be a wild “hip-hop” themed slasher and if you are expecting it to be okay–it is. The movie works really well in the (comedy) slasher genre it may fit in–with hip-hop!
Overall, You’re Nobody Till Somebody Kills You–is a specific horror/thriller specifically for B-movie enthusiasts and campy movie lovers. Truly an awful movie that is enjoyable only because there really isn’t a film anywhere quite like it.
You’re Nobody Til Somebody Kills You written and directed by Michael A. Pinckney, a film protege of Spike Lee (producer) who served as the executive producer of this project. Pinckney served as assistant director for television shows 7th Heaven, Law & Order, and the 2009 film Precious.
Source: Lionsgate Home Entertainment
- editor rating2
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