I Didn't Want to Like Eminem
Katherine Hanisco | Horsham, PA United States | 06/04/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Eminem always drove me crazy. I always saw him as one of those people so desperate for attention he was willing to say or do anything. With his inflammatory lyrics and personality, I assumed he had little talent and instead tried to get noticed by being controversial. I refused to give him any attention, even negative attention because I thought that was what he wanted.Then 8 Mile came out. I am a huge film buff and I read a lot of reviews. Reviewer after reviewer kept saying good things about it. I finally admitted that I wanted to see it - for curiosity if nothing else. And I have to (begrudgingly) admit that he is talented, both as an actor and a performer. That almost makes me even more angry - if he really is talented, and I believe he is, why not allow that to carry him to the top? I always think that people who use shock value to get attention do so because they can't get attention on talent alone.In any case, he can act. Eminem plays Rabbit, a guy in the poor section of Detroit, going through the motions of life, desperate for escape. He has two moods - depressedly morose, or explosively angry. I don't know if this is indicative of the real Eminem, but I hope that he smiles sometimes in real life. I don't think Rabbit ever does. To escape the monotony and sadness in his life, he participates in "battles" at a club where two rappers hurl insults back and forth at each other on stage.I wasn't crazy about the Brittany Murphy character, Alex. I thought a lot more could have been done with this role. I would have liked to see more development with her and Rabbit. But all in all, it is a gripping tale. The final showdown between Rabbit and his archenemy at the club is astonishingly climactic and full of an energy that will leave you buzzing. I came away not necessarily an Eminem fan, but certainly with a newfound respect for him and his talent."
Eminem impresses even a non-fan
Kyle R. Pierson | El Paso, TX | 11/07/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"After believing that Eminem's 15 minutes were up about two years ago, I was incredibly impressed to see just how good his performance was in 8 MILE. Being the only person on the planet that doesn't like his music, I thought that the only place that 8 MILE was headed was a Dead End. I stand corrected. Not only was the film extremely well acted, but it is very entertaining, as well. It takes a bit to get used to the street lingo, but I think fans will have a field day with it, nonetheless. As for whether or not you should bring the kids, DON'T! Three sex scenes, a few fist fights, one shooting, and all the foul language that you have come to expect from Eminem. The only nudity, however, is Eminem's rear. (That should sell a couple tickets, as is!) Although definitely not a film for everyone, the film showcases a new talent for Eminem that many will enjoy. The film is clever and fun. I will certainly be looking forward to his next project, and prefer it be a movie as opposed to a CD."
Eminem Displays Talent in New Film
Katherine Hanisco | 01/17/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Eminem, probably the most controversial rapper today, who is best known for his highly disturbing lyrics, stars in the first motion picture of his career, 8-mile. Eminem plays Jimmy Smith Jr., a young white rapper trying to make it big in a black dominated area in Detroit near 8-mile road, the barrier that seems to keep him from accomplishing his goals. He struggles trying to deal with home life in a trailer park with a near psychotic mother, as well as earning respect as a white rapper. He attempts to gain recognition for his talent by competing in battles between rappers of the street, he being the only one who's white. The movie seems all too familiar, being somewhat based on Eminem's real life. Kim Basinger plays his mother, Brittany Murphy his "sort of" girlfriend, and Mekkhi Phiffer stars as Future, the DJ of the battles. As all movies do, this one too has its high and low points, but overall 8-mile is a fairly good film, taking critics and moviegoers all over the country by surprise. Eminem proves he actually has acting ability and shows he doesn't qualify to be put into the "singer trying to act" category. He shows depth and emotion in his role with a performance that goes far beyond his otherwise annoying self. Kim Basinger also nails the role of the mother, giving a truly great performance in the film. The film is mostly dramatic but also contains comedy with a few strong, humorous lines delivered throughout. Some downsides are the excessive amount of vulgarity, seeming like every other word out of every characters mouth is a swear word, as well as some pointless scenes in the film that should have been left on the cutting room floor. If vulgarity is hard on your ears, stay as far away from this film as you can. However, an unexpected but highly energetic ending seems to make the whole movie worthwhile.The film goes beyond most people's expectations of what they believe it would be, showing talent as well as a solid plot. The movie is a must see for Eminem fans and anyone who enjoys rap music or entertaining, high intensity films."
That's Why They Call Me Slim Shady
Glock NU Hentai | A Narrow Round Corner | 11/26/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For a superstar known as a ticking time bomb, Eminem is a surprisingly savvy businessman. While his pop-chart peers Britney Spears and Mariah Carey broke into film with vehicles that cemented their status as walking punchlines, Eminem assembled outstanding collaborators for his own debut, 8 Mile, which comes closer to Mike Leigh's grim working-class realism than Hype Williams' flashiness.Directed by Curtis Hanson, co-edited by Jay Rabinowitz, and shot by cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto, 8 Mile stars Eminem as an aspiring rapper choking on the poverty, stale air, and broken dreams of his trailer-park life. To dull the pain of their rudderless existence, he and his friends drive around, smoke pot, burn down abandoned buildings, and generally behave like multicultural, Midwestern versions of the kids from Saturday Night Fever, another bleak working-class character study driven by a mesmerizing central star turn. But where John Travolta found escape on the dance floor, Eminem finds salvation and redemption in battle-rapping, a take-no-prisoners form of lyrical combat that places a heavy emphasis on improvisation and crowd reaction. Brittany Murphy co-stars as Eminem's unpredictable and pragmatic quasi-love interest, an aspiring model who sees him as her way out of Detroit, but who seems willing to hitch her fortunes to somebody else in case he doesn't work out.Effortlessly authentic in its depiction of working-class despair and the hope engendered by hip-hop's promise of upward social mobility, 8 Mile brings to the forefront the lower-class anger bubbling just under the surface of Eminem's music. Scott Silver's script follows a familiar arc that takes the rapper from humiliation and self-doubt to triumph and self-confidence, but the film's absolute conviction keeps it from feeling formulaic. By this point, even blue-haired grandmas will realize that the Eminem saga doesn't end with the rapper working at McDonald's and sharing a basement apartment with Vanilla Ice, but 8 Mile plunges so deep into the hopelessness of its setting that his success never feels preordained. Since his ascension to pop-culture royalty, Eminem has transformed the messy emotions of his life into musical black comedy. In 8 Mile, that life becomes an equally riveting drama."