Release Date: June 16, 2017
Run Time: 2 hour 20 minutes
After Credit Scene: NO
IMAX Viewing: NO
3D Viewing: NO
Reviewer: Wayne Demers
The Dope Sheet Score: 6 out of 10
A Non-Spoiler Review
A biography on poet, actor, and rapper Tupac Shakur (Demetrious Shipp Jr.). The story is told mostly through the eyes of an interviewer who is capturing Tupac’s life story while he is incarcerated. Once he is released from prison, the story is told in a traditional movie format.
What works: A great cast and Demetrious Shipp Jr. looks very much like Tupac. Dania Gurira, who is best known for her role as Michonne in The Walking Dead, plays Tupac’s mother, Afeni Shakur. It is a wonderful performance by Dania and she arguably gives the best performance in the movie. Jamal Woolard reprises his role as Biggie, a role he nailed in the movie, “Notorious.” You’ll also enjoy some of the backstory about some of Tupac’s hit songs and how he came to the record label, Death Row Records.
What doesn’t work: The first two acts of the film felt more like a scrapping of Tupac’s history and is taped together like a scrapbook. The enjoyable element of movies “Notorious” and “Straight Outta Compton” is that the movies each focus on the story, not the music. All Eyez On Me is presented like bad rap video’s book ending mediocre story telling. There are scenes of Tupac’s performances that draw out the film because the director focused on the music. Unfortunately, the lip syncing to Tupac’s music is good, but I’ve seen better on TV. The ending of the film falls flat because it tries so hard to pull at your heart strings with corny effects and music. The movie is supposed to be an “untold story,” but there are very few elements that are presented that haven’t already been made public.
As a fan of Tupac, I don’t feel this movie does his legacy justice. Tupac’s music far surpasses the quality of this movie. With some editing of nudity and language this was a made for TV movie at best. The script doesn’t convey the layer of depth into Tupac’s character. Editing also hurts the movie as there are scenes that feel as though they were spliced in as an afterthought and don’t transition well from one scene to the next.
Director Benny Boom is hoping all eyes are on his film, but this viewers ears enjoyed the music more than the movie.
On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the highest, I give All Eyez On Me a 6. I would wait to see this one on Netflix or RedBox.
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