There's no faulting the lyrical excellence on display. These guys are legends for a reason.
| Original Score: 3/5
Rap confirms the art of the form from the inside. Only time can sort out the rest.
Essential viewing and a nice companion piece to "Wild Style," "Style Wars" and other key hip-hop documentaries.
| Original Score: 3/4
In his debut as a documentarian, Ice T creates a vibrant portrait of how and why rap came to be.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
This is a film that does sweat the technique, with at times illuminating and spirited results.
| Original Score: 3.5/5
The interviews are often revealing and funny. And much of the music is tremendous.
The faces and voices are endlessly compelling as they talk about what inspires them to lay down beats and recall the early days in New York.
There's a discipline to moviemaking, too, alas, and when this effort strays from its (admittedly limited) subject to a surfeit of helicopter city shots and Ice's street prowling, it feels padded.
Something From Nothing: The Art Of Rap argues persuasively that hip hop can be disarmingly friendly, as well as an invaluable tool for social criticism and self-expression.
| Original Score: B+
An insightful film about the creative talents that have made hip-hop an original, enduring American musical tradition.