Reviews

Wild Style

4

Charlie Ahearn’s celebrated hip-hop docu-drama is still the most authentic account of the creative crucible in late ‘70s/early ‘80s South Bronx. The story of graffiti god ‘Zoro’ and his battle to stay true to his art is clunky-charming and works as a wily guide to early, underground hip-hop – before it mutated into today’s mainstream mush of glossy R&B. Ahearn shows where rap, scratch and sampling came from – raucous club parties soundtracked by vinyl breakbeats as MC crews bark out improv street poetry. Freed from ironic distance, it’s possible to see breakdance and body-popping as a dazzling, multi-racial dance-craze borne from street-corner nervous energy. There’s also the birth of bling, in a fine sequence where a bubbly-guzzling Zoro is ferried to a predatory art dealer’s flat in the back of a limo. Coolest commentary ever, too: with director Ahearn sitting back as MC Fab Five Freddy jabbers out a potted history of hip-hop.

 

Film Details

  • 15
  • UK Theatrical Release Date: September 10th 2007