Of all the breakdancing / hip-hop films released between 1983 and 1986, the 1984 film Beat Street is unquestionably the best one. The story follows a DJ, his younger breakdancing brother, a graffiti artist and a wanna-be showbiz promoter through one winter in which they try to break out of the ghetto using their "street" talent. The acting isn't always up to par and the characters aren't fully drawn out, but they are more than compensated for by down-to-earth dialogue, a plausible story, fantastic dancing sequences and a timeless hip-hop sound track. It should be noted this film was shot in the birthplace of breakdancing ("This ain't New York, this is the Bronx!"), and features appearances by the fathers of breakdancing, dance troupe Rock Steady Crew and rapper Afrika Bambaata. Rock Steady Crew provide the best scene in the film when they dominate a dance battle at the premiere breakdancing club of the early 80's, the Roxy. A must see for hip-hop lovers.
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An aspiring DJ, from the South Bronx, and his best friend, a promoter, try to get into show business by exposing people to hip-hop music and culture.
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September 4, 2019