Black and White (2002)
Critic Consensus: The atmosphere is affecting, and the story, at times, is compelling, but with a lean script and limp direction, Black and White doesn't add up to much.
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Critic Reviews for Black and White
As lively and amusing as the film is in some ways, it does set up expectations at the outset that are never really delivered upon.
It looks like a mess -- if one stuffed with incident, issues and intrigue.
It doesn't try to spell out all aspects of the issue or arrive at any particular point. Toback presents specific characters dealing with specific problems and, through their stories, somehow manages to take the temperature of the times.
This lively mess proves that when Toback loses his head, he does it with style.
Black and White is defeated by its structural shapelessness, and a down-with-it attitude that glosses over the script's lack of any real analysis of hip-hop's cultural influence.
Audience Reviews for Black and White
I'm sure I'd reviewed this film on Flixster but apparently not. Anyway, Black & White is a pretty unmemorable comment on race and culture, but there is good improvising from a typically excellent Robert Downey Jr.
Director James Toback is here evidentially trying to do a "Robert Altman" by splicing interweaving story lines, but to be honest the whole thing is pretty messy and actually quite contrived.
Just a fine drama like documentary tale of race, class, and sexual boundaries blur in this voyeuristic tour of modern Manhattan in which privileged white kids reinvent themselves as gangstas, and African-American thugs morph into recording artists.
A film that tries to cast Mike Tyson as an intellectual is never going to be that good. Odd film that shows how some white kids think it's cool to act gangster. Also shows how a promising basketball player gets caught up in the illegal activities of his friends.
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