Love Beats Rhymes        review by Bobby Blakey

Before he stepped into the world of directing the RZA was breaking the music charts as a member of the iconic rap group the Wu-Tang Clan. Since then he has taken on numerous acting roles as well as some directing including the awesome Man With the Iron Fists. Now he is taking on a different kind of film, but from a world he knows a lot about with Love Beats Rhymes starring Azealia Banks, Jill Scott, Common, Lucien Laviscount, Hana Mae Lee and Method Man, but does it bring the poetry it is hoping for or will it fail to hit the beat?

Love Beats Rhymes follows struggling rapper Coco who enrolls in a poetry class, where she thinks her rhymes will impress her teacher, Professor Dixon. Instead, Dixon challenges Coco to seek real meaning in her lyrics, setting her on a journey of discovery that takes her through rap clubs and poetry slams, leading her to find her true voice and true love. I went into this film expecting something completely different than what I thought it might be. I have loved rap and hip-hop since I was a kid and tend to gravitate towards all things it is a part, so with the RZA involved I instantly wanted to see this film. The twist bringing the two together in this story made for a different kind of movie than most like this. For most people tend to dismiss rap as being just talking and somehow elevated poetry to something more powerful, but in reality when properly executed are one and the same. This story takes that message and slaps it right in the foreground as the catalyst for this girl’s story and it works.

If there is any issues here it comes more in the generic nature of it at times. Despite it being a good effective story, there aren’t any really powerful moments to help it standout. With these kinds of stories I always wait for that moment to slap you in the face as it brings it home and here there was so much predictably that it never packed that much needed punch. Despite this it is still a good movie with a good story that is worth checking out.

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