I can't get enough of Style Wars, me. And Wild Style. Those two are my own personal favourite hip hop flicks.
Some may mention Beat Street. I wouldn't. There's some nice elements in there but it is very watered down; just check out the wiggedy-wack train piece ("Hip hop ya don't stop") which was purportedly sprayed by the late DONDI - for shame!
And did someone say Breakin'....? Let's see, some good b-boying but as it was the west coast there was more popping than floor work. Points added for the early ICE T performance (and was that Chris 'The Glove' Taylor or David Storrs in the background, I forget). Points taken away for the Jean-Claude Van Damme performance.
Points definately snatched away for the overtly typical Hollywood treatment throughout. T.K. or whatever the girl's name was did not fit in. I repeat, she DID NOT FIT IN. If this was real life she would've been pimped out quicker than you could say 'where's my money bi-yatch'.
How about Krush Groove? This is a slept-on hip hop film that features some okay acting but great musical performances. First of all you've got Run DMC as themselves which they do unsurprisingly well. Blair Underwood plays Run's big bro, Russell - although why they didn't get the man himself in I don't know - and Rick Rubin plays himself. You've got the legendary LL Cool J doing an audition as Jam Master Jay yells, "No more auditions, man!!", while LL coolly says to Cut Creator, "BOX!" and proceeds into 'I Can't Live Without My Radio'. The Fat Boys make their celluloid debut as well. Unfortunately after Krush Groove their heads swelled to the size of their bellies and took on the steaming pile of turd that was Disorderlies. Remember that? No, neither do I.
If you managed to sit through Run DMC's other cinematic masterpiece, Tougher Than Leather then I'd like to shake your hand. Disjointed? Was it a comedy? Drama? It hurts to think. And then there's the album of the same name...Mary, Mary, that bizarre Ragtime joint, Miss Elaine? But there was some redemption in Run's House and They Call Us Run DMC. Just.
What about Juice? I like this and should watch it again. Some credible dj performances especially in the dj battle. And Tupac (whose acting skills were better than his rapping skills, oooo, controversial) comes into his own as a real nut-bag. The soundtrack to this is 85% good with an absolute killer main title tune by Eric B & Rakim in their last hip hop classic.
I should mention Boyz N the Hood, New Jack City and Menace II Society as well as these were all released in the early Nineties along with Juice. These no longer displayed the raw elements of hip hop but rather focussed on the inner city struggles, so we don't get to see Icecube bust a windmill or Wesley Snipes throwing down on the 1's and 2's.
Anyhoo, here is a nice accompaniment to the film Style Wars in the form of an 18-page press release which gives a good insight into the making of the film.