When the culture of hip-hop became something privileged white kids latched onto, American race relations underwent a fascinating transformation.
In James Toback’s largely improvised, Manhattan-set Black And White, a cast of race-gamut-running actors traverse the worlds of the rap music business, film-making, athletics, crime and politics, trying to decide if cultural integrity is ingrained or can be bought and sold.
The characters are worth a look – especially Ben Stiller’s undercover cop or pixie-voiced Bijou Phillips’ party girl – but rarely does this experiment achieve bold satire or truth. Movie Moment Of The Year, however, may go to the slapping of Robert Downey Jr by Mike Tyson, the former playing documentarian Brooke Shields’ gay husband and the latter playing his own seriously peeved self when confronted at a party by Downey’s hilarious come-ons.
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