“Nobody Owns Me Though”

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Saw American Gangster this weekend. Instant classic. Denzel and Russell Crowe acted their asses off.

Some favorite quotes:

Det. Richie Roberts (Crowe): “Sometimes I don’t think they want this thing to stop…Judges, lawyers, cops, politicians. They stop bringing dope into this country, about a hundred thousand people are gonna be out of a job.”

Frank Lucas (Denzel) on cleaning a blood stain: “Thats a $25,000 dollar rug, you don’t rub, you blot that!”

And anything said by the Rza, like: “He passin out Thanksgiving turkeys man!”

Definitely peep the New Yorker article that the movie is based on. I think this movie along with Bastards of the Party and every season of The Wire are essential viewing for trying to understand all the different angles of the “War on Drugs.”

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4 responses to ““Nobody Owns Me Though”

  1. i absolutely loved this movie. any of my skeptism came from seeing one of my students who lives in richmond at the movie theater. he is an 8th grade latino kid who can barely read and afterwards he was telling me how it “was hella tight when denzel shot dude in his head in front of everyone!” he has been suspended in the past from school for sporting gang affiliated attire and is headed down a path of self-destruction.

    one thing i neglected to mention in my own blog was how important this movie was to exposing the hypocrisy of amerikan law enforcement. something like 66% of the NYPD’s Special Investigation Unit was majory derrty and corrupt.

    the last part of the movie where lucas’ and roberts’ stories finally come crashing together was so important because of the convo they have about how detective roberts (crowe) found the million dollars and didnt keep it. “you know johnny law got that right?” denzel tells crowe. as a teacher, sometimes i feel a lot like roberts. im trying to do the “right thing,” but in the end the wrong people come out on top and the difference i am making isnt signifcant enough to make change that is clearly visible.

    i see frank lucas in the life of my boy who is currently incarcerated. his i “i tried that way and got nothing so f*ck it,” attitude is completely understandable in a country that brings terror and constant pressure into the lives of young black men. however, just like roberts and lucas, my brother and i took very different paths in life but both ended up being victims to a system that is backwards and leaves us disappointed/let down on a daily basis.

    anyhoo, i write too much. =P bottom line is, this movie was amazing and a classic. i just hope parents who have young children (who are barely literate) pay attention to the R-rating, and keep theyre babies at home when they see a movie as violent and mature as this.

    the cheddarbox is blue magic.
    Senbei

  2. My favorite line: “I’m thinking about them as much as they’ve ever thought about me.” It’s really incredible how you root for Frank Lucas throughout the whole movie.

    The movie was essentially flawless…it hardly wasted a minute. But Cuba Gooding Jr.’s character was ridiculous. You can’t have a-list actors like Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe, and then just throw Snow Dogs in there.

    And why wasn’t the Jay-Z song in there? I read that Denzel wanted him to put together the whole soundtrack, but Ridley Scott said no. I think that was a big mistake because as it stands, the soundtrack is so forgettable. (Except for the Anthony Hamilton track. Love the sequin scarf.) Jay-Z has an encyclopedic knowledge of 70s music and could’ve made a classic soundtrack that would’ve stood next to Pulp Fiction, Dead Presidents and Stand By Me.

    Anyway, glad you wrote about this film because I was wondering the whole time if you had seen it!

  3. wadup cheddar,

    just copped the Bastards of the Party DVD. shit was ON POINT! also, don’t know if you’ve seen it already but Hip Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes is on DVD now also. Its another joint that all heads must see, especially the fellas…

    -tadillac

  4. Definitely need to peep that Hip Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes DVD, I heard its dope. And I wanted an all Rza produced soundtrack to American Gangster. They passin out Thanksgiving turkeys son!

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