‘Idlewild’

Andre Benjamin
Antwan A. Patton
Paula Patton
Terrence Howard
Faizon Love
Malinda Williams
Cicely Tyson
Macy Gray

R           121min           2006

‘Idlewild’ is a musical set in the Prohibition-era American South, where a speakeasy performer and club manager contend with gangsters who have their eyes on the club while his piano player and partner must choose between love and his obligations to his father.

Not many musical groups could pull off what ‘Outcast’ did with this film. ‘Outcast’ has brought to the screen a modern musical for the ages. It’s not only is it entertaining but boasts some great acting from cast of some of the best African-American talent. The story isn’t that in depth but the musical numbers make up for it.

‘Outcast’ has brought to the screen that tailored to their strengths as a group. Antwan “Big Boi” Patton is the ruggish club owner doing what it takes to make his club a success. Andre Benjamin is a mortician by day and a piano player but night longing for something more. ‘Bug Boi’ for the most part brings to musical numbers to life while ‘Andre 3000’ a rising talented actor, carries the acting of the duo.

The musical numbers are modern, relatable and flow with the story. It’s complimented by the acting by Terrence Howard, Macy Gray, another rising actress in her own right, and Paula Patton. Neither overshadowed each other, which in most musicals one or the other does. This fact lends itself to being a widely acceptable musical.

‘Idlewild’ doesn’t have a in-depth story but it’s a complete and fulfilling story. If the musical number were taken out it would still hold up as a complete story but it’s the musical numbers that make it worth watching. You could skip this film but you would miss out on a surprising good film.

I give it a 3/5 Gs.

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