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Idlewild

Idlewild

Rated:R
Studio:Universal Pictures Distribution
Director:Bryan Barber
Cast:Andre 'Andre 3000' Benjamin, Antwan 'Big Boi' Patton, Faizon Love, Paula Jai Parker, Paula Patton
Genre:Drama, Musical
Our Rating:

Contrary to expectations, the long-delayed OutKast movie doesn’t out-and-out stank — but it still could use massive recutting to make it less schizophrenic and taxing. The potentially troublesome interpolation of modern-day hip-hop into Prohibition-era Georgia works fairly well, with co-stars Andre “3000” Benjamin and Antwan “Big Boi” Patton having fun playing speakeasy entertainers while running through every cliché of old-time negritude. The musical numbers that take place in that nightclub setting go down smoother than the handful of bizarrely inserted solo numbers Benjamin gets to croon in a bedroom full of cuckoo clocks (jarring tips of the hat to filmmaker Bryan Barber’s history as the director of the group’s music videos). At a certain point, the baldly borrowed story elements go from cute to plain lazy, and you notice that Benjamin’s and Patton’s characters — introduced as friends from childhood — share almost no scenes. They don’t cut albums together, and now they don’t shoot films together. It sure makes you pine for Help! and its absurdly sunny suggestion that all four Beatles lived under a common roof.

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