Superfly: My Review
When the trailer for “Superfly” first dropped, the first words out of my mouth were, “Who asked for this shit?” My next words were: “What the hell is going on with this hair? Is that a rooster on his head?” I didn’t see the need for this reboot of the classic 1972 blaxpoitation film. I certainly didn’t see the need for one that was produced by Future. To me, it seemed to be nothing more than another suspect in the lineup of the half-assed, unwanted film reboots that are currently plaguing Hollywood. I was skeptical to say the least; however, one of my friends mentioned that it was directed by Director X (also known as Little X). This was the man responsible for iconic music videos such as Drake’s “Hotline Bling,” “HYFR,” and “Started From the Bottom.” He also directed other great videos such as Sean Paul’s “I”m Still In Love With You,” Usher’s “Yeah,” and 112’s “Peaches N Creme” with the infamous “Dance With You” breakdown. Hell, he’s responsible for the music videos that birthed the beginning of Superhead. I had to put some respeck on his name. This man is a legend; therefore, I could expect that at the very least, there would be some dope visuals, right?
So I made a decision that for better or worse, I was going to see this film. It was either going to be really good or it was going to be horrible. In my mind, there wasn’t going to be an "in between." It was either going to be like “Takers” or “Belly"; opposite ends of the same Blackbuster spectrum. When a friend mentioned that she had free passes to an advanced screening, I jumped on the opportunity. If the movie was terrible, then it wouldn’t be any money out of my pocket. We got to the theater, claimed to be “PRESS” so that we could get the better seats at the top of the theater, and settled in for the feature film. Ya’ll, I came to that theater prepared to roast the hell out of that movie, and I left invested. It was GOOD.
I know. You’re probably just as shocked as I was, but if I’m lying, I’m frying. It was a good ass movie. This could have gone horribly wrong, and that’s just facts. Very few reboots actually live up to the original, and I’m not saying that I think this reboot is just as good or better than the original film. It’s not. It’s different, but in a good way. Director X took classic elements from the original film and adapted it to fit today’s context without being super obnoxious. It's obvious that the writers did their research on the foundations of the original film and spent a lot of time to develop a script that combined them with the standard operating procedure of the 21st century dope game. And I know, what you’re thinking. How could you take this movie seriously when it focuses around a character whose hair resembles Young Jock after he got a perm because he wanted to be like Jidenna? In its own subtle ways, the film pokes fun at his hairstyle so that in some cases, they tell the joke before you can even form your mouth to do so. It’s like B.Rabbit in his final rap battle versus Papa Doc in “8 Mile." You can’t roast him, if they’re already doing it for you. Aha!
I must warn you that “Superfly” is an ATL movie. Not only is the entire movie filmed in the state of Georgia, but I swear that most of the actors in the movie have to be Atlanta natives. The accents, the outfits, and the dialogue were pure 404, 770, and 678. For example, without giving anything away, one of the characters says, “An ambulance is on its way. Tell them to take you to Grady. They’ll try to take you somewhere else, but tell them you’ll only go to Grady.” Everybody from Georgia knows that if you get hurt, get in an accident, have a heart attack, or all of the above, you tell that ambulance to take you directly to Grady. Do not pass go and do not collect $200. If you go anywhere else, your chance of dying increases by 500%, and if they tell you they’re taking you to the old South Fulton hospital, it’s a wrap. The accents were so authentically ATLien that I’m sure that the white audience members would have preferred if the movie came with subtitles. I promise ya’ll that the movie “ATL” with T.I. and NuNu wasn’t as Atlanta as this movie was, and that’s saying a lot.
I love to talk shit about Future. Honestly, I expect anything associated with Future to be full of Dirty Sprite and mumble rapping. That's just facts. I mean, let's not forget that this is the same man that hopped on a track with Jay Rock, Kendrick Lamar and James Blake for a Disney movie and the best thing he could offer them was “La di da di da, slob on me knob.” However, I have to give credit where credit is due. His song choices were really good, and they flowed naturally with the course of the movie. His beats matched perfectly with Director X's visuals, especially during the club scenes. At times, I felt like I was watching one elaborate music video complete with women booty popping from the ceiling. They truly captured the essence of an average night at Onyx or Magic City, and I truly applaud them for that.
While Trevor Jackson gives a good performance as Youngblood Priest, I will admit that my favorite was Jason Mitchell as Eddie. His character was the quintessential homeboy, living the fast life and playing the “brawn” to his best friend’s “brain." His one-liners were hilarious and the banter that he had with other characters stole several scenes. Also, I didn’t know that Michael K. Williams had some serious fighting skills, which he displayed several times throughout the movie. Color me impressed, ya’ll. Prepare for other random, but fabulous cameos such as Antwan “Big Boi” Patton as the Mayor of Atlanta, Lecrae, Ricky Rozay as Ricky Rozay in a fur coat, and the big ass mansion where Gregory Hines’ character lived in “The Preacher’s Wife.” Also, the wardrobe department deserves whatever the hood equivalent of an Oscar is because THEY DID THAT! There were no Steve Harvey suits or Stacey Adams here!
I’m fully expecting white critics to say that “Superfly” was bad because there were so many things in the movie that clearly went over their heads. It was a similar experience to watching Beyonce's "Coachella" performance when the white audience didn't know anything about black Greek culture or even how to Swag Surf. Yeah, just like that. That's why I’m very interested to see if black critics enjoyed it as much as I did. Yes, some parts of it are a bit absurd, but what’s a good action movie without a little suspension of belief? And honestly, you won’t be suspending as much as you think. Come to roast Trevor Jackson’s hair, but stay because it’s actually a decently written movie with some hood ass characters, great acting, and banging music. If you’ve seen “Superfly” we would love to hear your thoughts below!