Gimme The Loot (2013)
Critic Consensus: Thanks to energetic performances from its young leads, Gimme The Loot captures a slice of city life with warmth and exuberance.
Malcolm and Sofia, two determined teens from the Bronx, are the ultimate graffiti-writers. When a rival gang buffs their latest masterpiece, they must hatch a plan to get revenge by tagging an iconic NYC landmark, but they need to raise $500 to pull off their spectacular scheme. Over the course of two whirlwind, sun-soaked summer days, Malcolm and Sofia travel on an epic urban adventure involving black market spray cans, illicit bodegas, stolen sneakers, a high wire heist, and a beautiful, rich girl's necklace that is literally their key to becoming the biggest writers in the City. (c) Official Site … More
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Critic Reviews for Gimme The Loot
Amid all the copycatting and pricey bombast and genericness, here's a movie that looks like it hails from a real place; whose characters sound like they come from somewhere; whose stakes are stresslessly low.
'Gimme the Loot' is ... meandering and a little shallow. And even at 79 minutes it feels a little too long for what's essentially the film equivalent of a short story.
A film brimming with so much life and mischief that it left me in an almost insufferably good mood for days afterwards. I didn't want it to end.
Watching this film reminded me a bit of 'Friends,' the funny TV show where nothing ever happens. Here, there is a lot of activity, but nothing much is accomplished, except for the creation of a funny, entertaining movie.
What gets this slight episodic film to first base is the likability shown by the non-professional leads.
Audience Reviews for Gimme The Loot
'Gimme the Loot'. Three likeable leads including the city of New York, which is very much a character in its own right.
"Gimme the Loot" starts with Sophia(Tashiana Washington) and Malcolm(Ty Hickson) pocketing as many cans of spray paint as they can handle from a hardware store, with Champion(Meeko) driving the getaway car. Their streak of success continues with their tagging a roof with their handles. But then are angry to find the following morning that a competing crew has painted over it. In order to make a name for themselves and to get revenge against them and Mets fans everywhere, Sophia proposes tagging the giant apple in Citi Field which rises every time the Mets hit a home run. And Malcolm has a contact who can let them in. But that's going to take $500 which they don't currently have. So, Sophia goes to collect an unpaid debt while Malcolm goes to see his employer.
"Gimme the Loot" is a funny, vibrant and fresh caper comedy. As this was probably filmed on a limited budget, first time writer-director Adam Leon makes the most of it by showing quite the talent for composing shots. That especially extends to depicting fast-paced New York City where even the largest dreams are possible(although maybe not a large soda in the near future) but don't try to lose sight of what is closest to you. That's true even in a divided city, just not evenly so, as there is some mix between the classes, especially on the subway, Sophia and Malcolm's favorite mode of transportation. And with all of the corporate graffiti we have to deal with every day, what's wrong with a little personal expression? Just don't mind the petty larceny, and enjoy the rocking cool soundtrack.
It speaks volumes to "Gimme the Loot's" totally not showy, completely un-flashy humbleness -- the same sort of elements that go into falling in love -- that writer-director Adam Leon chose to leave his name for last in the movie's closing credits. I'm sure a lot of "Loot" was improvised, but that isn't to forsake Leon's talent as being something to watch; nor is it to ignore the shear standalone excellence of his debut feature. A white guy whose previous credits include production assistant on two films by Woody Allen (who doesn't get much whiter), Leon is strikingly adept at layering language and everyday urban city culture while also able to cross out the static and bullshit to tell a singular story.
"Gimme the Loot" is Spike Lee meets "Exit Through the Gift Shop". You don't have to know -- or even care -- jack about street art for "Loot" to hit a chord. Even the deaf would be head over heels for the physical energy of the lead performances by Tashiana Washington and Ty Hickson, two actors that marriage the spontaneity and sophistication of body motion and words to get at the heart of New York City's fight moves of rush, noise and swagger. They play graffiti artists out to tag the Mets' Home Run Apple to spite a rival crew that paint over their work. "Gimme the Loot" is cinema that feels in-the-moment and alive. Don't make the mistake of looking to it for any larger point, because blink and you'll miss appreciating it as a great movie, gritty and real without ever seeming bleak, because it flat-out no question is.
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