Movie Reviews: 'Dope'

 ‘Dope’ (2015) Review

By Jacob Fisher


    ‘Dope’ (2015) is a film that made a splash at Sundance.  The film got a lot of praise and got bought up right away.  And it’s all well deserved. From the fantastic performances to the heartfelt story ‘Dope’ is the freshest, dopest, funniest, coming of age film I've seen in a while.  

 ‘Dope’ follows Malcolm (Shameik Moore) who’s in his senior year of high school and dealing with the thoughts of college.  The problem?  He’s in a poor urban area and not a lot of people believe in him.  But with his best friends Diggy (Kiersey Clemons) and Jaleel (Quincy Brown) anything is possible.  One day he get noticed by a dope dealer and his life is changed forever. He gets invited to a party and while he’s at the party shit get crazy and he ends up running out with drugs in his backpack.  Now the question is: What’s the next step? 

The first thing to say about ‘Dope’ is the amazing soundtrack.  I went to an advance screening on Tuesday with my girl and we both looked at each other halfway through the movie and said at the same time, “We have to buy this soundtrack.” So as soon as we got out of the movie we went to Best Buy, Walmart, FYE, and Target looking for the soundtrack.  And we didn’t find it. But then I went on Google and found that it was on iTunes and I ended up buying it and burning two copies.  The soundtrack features some great throwback hip hop music and some newer stuff as well.

The second thing to say about ‘Dope’ is the fantastic performances.  My hope is that Shameik Moore gets some love during award season and maybe wins best breakthrough performance. He had the perfect amount of humor and heart making it so much fun to watch him work his music on the screen.  While Kiersey Clemons and Quincy Brown were on screen for a large majority of the movie they really were not given much to show their range like Shameik Moore. 

‘Dope’ is a refreshing coming of age story that follows the steps of other coming of age tales while adding its own stamp on the gene.  From the fantastic breakthrough performance of Shameik Moore to the awesome mix of newer and older gems of hip hop in the soundtrack makes this a must see film.  Check it out if it’s playing near you.