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All Critics (16)
| Top Critics (10)
| Fresh (12)
| Rotten (4)
A rare glimpse of everyday life in Cuba, where big questions and obstacles confront the rappers at seemingly every turn.
East of Havana sets individual stories against the bitter, resilient landscape of Cuba's political history. For the youth in the film, music doesn't just have a purpose, it is a purpose, and the artists find in hip-hop a 'mental freedom.'
If you thought that the Buena Vista Social Club was all that needed to be said about Cuban music, now there's East of Havana, which is about the Cuba rap scene.
East of Havana lacks the grace or intelligence to let the music speak for itself.
There's a beat, but we never quite see who's dancing to it.
The film makes an ironic point about Cuba: This is a land where the grandparents are revolutionaries (or at least say they are) but the kids are yearning for capitalist globalization.
There are some memorable, evocative moments, but they are spoiled by the film's obvious and simplistic politics.
It would have been nice to say that EAST OF HAVANA serves a terrific introduction to the world of Cuban hip-hop, but I cannot.
East of Havana, at its best, extols the Cuban hip-hop artist's sense of community and insistence on being heard through the rhetoric of Castro's revolution.
A powerful hip-hop song makes you want to change the world; East Of Havana, sadly, just made me want to change the channel.
Visually striking (particularly the opening and end titles sequences), the film reveals the everyday lives of everyday people, both where and how they live.
Soandry flows with intelligence rarely seen now in the states; don't be surprised if you hear his name again.
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