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Overall Rating
4.29

Awesome: 41.07%
Worth A Look51.79%
Just Average: 3.57%
Pretty Crappy: 1.79%
Sucks: 1.79%

7 reviews, 14 user ratings


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Dave Chappelle's Block Party
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by EricDSnider

"The crazy rich guy from Comedy Central throws a ragin' party."
4 stars

On Sept. 18, 2004, Dave Chappelle used his own money to put on a concert at the intersection of Downing and Quincy streets in the Bed-Stuy neighborhood of Brooklyn. He gave out tickets to 5,000 people, including a few busloads he brought in from his hometown of Dayton, Ohio. The show featured his comedy along with hours of rap and hip-hop performances by everyone from Kanye West to Erykah Badu. The Fugees, broken up since 1997, reunited and did a set. It was a day of bliss for Chappelle's fans.

In a year that has already suffered from the embarrassing shuckin' and jivin' of Martin Lawrence and Tyler Perry in "Big Momma's House 2" and "Madea's Family Reunion," it's exhilarating to see a film that celebrates black culture without turning it into a minstrel show. "Dave Chappelle's Block Party" captures the energy and fun of that 2004 event in a way that few documentaries do, enough to make a white guy with a general disdain for rap music stop and think: Huh. These people are really having a good time.

Watching the movie, directed by Michel Gondry ("Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind"), is a good time, too. Footage is divided about equally between the onstage performances and Chappelle's pre-show shenanigans, which includ walking around Dayton giving out tickets and inviting the entire Central State University marching band and drumline to come perform. We see him bantering with musicians during rehearsals and touring the Bed-Stuy neighborhood, always cracking jokes, always seemingly in disbelief at his own good fortune. (This was before he went off the deep end and fled his Comedy Central show.)

The musical performances are tight, Chappelle's comedy is funny, and the crowd response is ecstatic. They love the rappers, they LOVE Dave Chappelle, and Chappelle loves everybody in return. There must have been a strong security presence there, with all those big stars performing, but in the film we catch only a glimpse of a couple bouncers. Maybe they remained incognito, or maybe Gondry just avoided filming them. Either way, it adds to the sensation that the concert was indeed nothing more high-falutin' than a neighborhood block party, where everyone is welcome and all they want to do is enjoy themselves.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=12885&reviewer=247
originally posted: 03/02/06 22:31:47
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Toronto Film Festival For more in the 2005 Toronto Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2006 U.S. Comedy Arts Festival For more in the 2006 U.S. Comedy Arts Festival series, click here.

User Comments

10/30/10 Shay It isn't so much about the music but if you can't listen to hip-hop don't watch it. 5 stars
10/12/07 yuko i wish if i could have been there 4 stars
4/17/07 David Pollastrini NEVER THOUGHT MUCH OF HIM 2 stars
8/13/06 George I smell reefer 4 stars
8/05/06 MikeT THIS MOVIE IS MISLEADING! 10mins of Chapelle & the rest is a rap concert. 1 stars
7/25/06 Indrid Cold If you don't like the music, there's not much that's worth seeing. 3 stars
6/23/06 Jan Willis Enjoyed Dave but not the music 4 stars
4/16/06 millersxing A showcase for these awesome performers, Dave is the _truth_. 5 stars
3/30/06 Soha Molina ok 3 stars
3/25/06 PABLO RAMIREZ this film is too sick 5 stars
3/24/06 Ole Man Bourbon Mostly musical performances, overall it's decent but not much funny stuff. 4 stars
3/10/06 Tanya it was wonderful, I saw it the first day it came out 5 stars
3/06/06 ajay the music's not my thing, but I enjoyed this movie. 4 stars
10/05/05 kre Not only is it hilarious, but it is truly soulful and funk-tacular. 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  03-Mar-2006 (R)
  DVD: 13-Jun-2006

UK
  N/A

Australia
  04-May-2006


Directed by
  Michel Gondry

Written by
  Dave Chappelle

Cast
  Dave Chappelle
  Erykah Badu
  Mos Def
  Lauryn Hill
  Wyclef Jean
  Kanye West



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