Top 10 Interesting Things From Ice-T's The Art of Rap


2. You Might Walk Out of the Movie Not Knowing What the Movie Was About: This might be the most prescient point of the movie, or it might be the most confusing, or it might not be anything at all, but still: While walking out of the theater and towards the exit, a man a few paces ahead of my wife and me pulled out his cell phone and (I'm assuming) returned someone's call.

His words: "I just got out of the movies. [Other Person Talking] We saw Ice-T's rap documentary. [Other Person Talking] Um... I don't know. They talked about rap."

This might've been a common feeling. For an hour and 40 or so minutes, you hear Ice-T ask a bunch of men (and two women) that like to say words that rhyme questions about what it means to them to say words that rhyme. Conversations are never pushed beyond that point (or any directly related points, to be more specific).

And that's part of why it's such an interesting documentary. Ignoring that Ice-T is clearly of the mind that rap as an entity needs to be defended (curious, considering it is the driving force in popular culture today), it never feels heavy-handed or preachy. You get to listen to brilliant people (and Chino XL) talk about being brilliant at things. It's serious and it's funny and it's entertaining and it's enlightening.

I suppose you could argue that Ice finds a way to reference himself in each conversation, but there are worse things in the world.


1. Dr. Dre Never Once Talked About Himself As a Rapper: Not once in his entire interview. He is a producer. That's it. That's how he sees himself. And that's pretty remarkable.

Oh, also, there's one part where he goes into that whole "I Don't Do It For The Money" spiel, and that's cool, except he's giving it while standing in front of his new $13 million home on top of goddamn Zeus' mountain.


One Nit That'll Inevitably Get Picked: Omissions

1. How about the Southern United States? Minus Bun B's brief cameo (shot in New York, mind you), there aren't any interviews done with Southern rappers. Where are OutKast, Lil Wayne (or any of the guys from that family), Master P, Goodie Mob, T.I., Scarface, Willie D, so on and so on? They belong.

2. Also not included: Anyone from The Roots, Busta Rhymes (let him talk a bit about Leaders of the New School), The Pharcyde, keep going and going.

Maybe get rid of those guys from earlier and throw some of these in their places? Just thinking out loud.

Other than that though, really, The Art of Rap is a documentary worth seeing.



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AMC Studio 30

2949 Dunvale, Houston, TX

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8 comments
Vandellish
Vandellish

As far as Lord Finesse, Chino XL, Xzibit or whoever's inclusion I guess arguments can be made (reminds me of those 'greatest' lists) but I actually hold each of their levels of skill in high regard so I don't have a problem there.

 

My question is about #2...I don't see how a viewer could watch this and not understand what the film is about. It's simply about the nuts and bolts of these artists' creative process and their approach to songwriting as well as performing in and out of the studio. The weird songwriting technique that Rakim described as well as that KRS-1 story captured the essence of this film in a nutshell.

 

I don't have issues with the film outside of some of the background music being a bit too high during some interviews. If I had to nitpick I'd say that some up-and-coming MCs could have been included but Ice-T only had so much time and this movie could really be a 10 volume series if he wanted it to be.

 

I just wanna thank Ice-T for making a movie purely about the art form and without all the rest of the BS that the mainstream crowd typically thinks hip hop is about.

 

P.S.~ Dre is my boy and all but he LIED...if he was in the studio THAT much over the last 27+ years we'd have more compilation albums from him than the two (TWO!!!!) since '92... Yeah I said it!!!

KING
KING

Canibus:Battling::M. Night Shyamalan:Directing

PETE
PETE

Chino XL is included because, like Canibus and (dah-dum) Royce da 59, he's one of the most brilliant battle rappers ever. He just (like Canibus and (dah-dum) Royce da 59) could never pull an album together that was worth a damn. But listen to some of his battle clips and tell me he shouldn't get more respect. As for Xhibit, yeah, he's probably friends with Ice.

bun b
bun b

 this article/review blows...

KING
KING

"You get to listen to brilliant people (and Chino XL) talk about being brilliant at things." Haven't seen this yet, but isn't Chino XL a member of MENSA?

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