Monday, January 07, 2008


I was grazing the fields at Block Buster when I came across this title. Interesting cover. Interesting caption: "A visual miracle!" Since it wasn't directed by Uwe Boll, I gave it shot. (Uwe, by the way, is most likely the worst "Director" to ever put his stink on a movie. He's like an Anti-Midas, anything he touches turns to shite!)

At first (for probably half the movie, actually!) I thought it was a very straight-faced mockumentary. Maybe I'm a very sheltered geek. Or maybe I'm far too crackerfied to really know anything about "West Coast" social movements. But I've never even imagined there'd be a style of dance developed by a clown, who was looking to make a defying statement against the 1992 L.A Riots. Not only did it get aptly named "clowning," but a radical fringe group of clowners broke off and mutated the style into "krumping." It sounds like science fiction and I kept looking for the punch line. ("Ha! You fell for it!) But the social movement of clowning and krumping are completely authentic, and well documented in Rize.

Without the slightest bit of sarcasm or persnicketiness, I will admit it was a tremendous pleasure to watch this movie. I was hypnotized! By the people. By their stories. By the amazing development of this sub-culture. And especially by the seemingly impossible moves displayed by everyone in the show.

On top of the incredible content, the direction is perfect. The pacing flows extremely well. The musical score is phenomenal. And it is all pulled together with such precision that the movie seems to create itself without any outside influence or support. How this slipped past everyone's radar is beyond me. I can only imagine it is due to the obscurity of the subject matter being so far beyond anyone's usual interest (outside of California) that it was a complete sleeper when it hit the theaters.

I still can't believe I'm writing about this movie! I still can't believe it isn't fictional! I want more. I want to see parts two, three, and four. I want to know what happened once the cameras stopped rolling and all these people had to go back to their lives.

I want a sequel!

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