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Biggie Gives Us One More Chance

Biggie Smalls' mythology hasn't afforded him a dreamy endgame à la Tupac or Elvis. Nobody imagines Biggie pulling the ultimate Machiavellian coup by making the world believe he's dead while he's secretly chillin' in Jamaica.

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Notorious

Notorious looks back on the day when hip-hop was coming into its seeming own, when telling stories was a way to make order from chaos, as well as money and, as Biggie saw it, mo problems.

Film

Why, Spike, Why?

For all of Spike Lee's status as the eternal Young Turk, he's also a moviemaker who came of age just a few years after the brat pack of Spielberg, Scorsese, de Palma, et al.

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Lions for Lambs

Though Lions barely considers the soldiers' choices, it's clear they've been egregiously misinformed, turned into terms in someone else's argument.

Film

Catch a Fire (2006)

Actually, Phillip Noyce's thriller raises a question: how have the South African "terrorists," so deemed by Botha's administration, since become courageous freedom fighters?

Film

Glory Road (2006)

Includes all the usual tricks of the genre, from vintage soundtrack and heart-pounding court action to excellent performances and heartfelt lessons underlined by teary eyes in close-up.

Cynthia Fuchs
Film

Friday Night Lights (2004)

It's mostly about how football -- in this place, at this time -- overwhelms its adherents, apparently giving them something to live for but also sucking their lives from them.

Cynthia Fuchs
Film

Spartan (2004)

David Mamet extends his famous preoccupation with masculine preoccupations into the murky workings of the U.S. government.

Cynthia Fuchs
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