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Scratch review

When hip-hop innovator Grand Wizard Theodore experimented with scratching vinyl in the '70s, he couldn't have imagined the consequences. But watching Doug Pray's exuberant portrayal of the birth and continuing evolution of the hip-hop DJ, it's not hard to see why turntables now outsell guitars.

Mixing hip-hop history with interviews with top "turntablists", footage from competitions and impromptu freestyling sessions caught on camera, Pray's enthralling documentary eschews flashy effects in favour of allowing the DJs and music to speak for themselves. So sit back and enjoy virtuoso performances from the likes of DJ Shadow, the X-Ecutioners, Qbert and MixMasterMike, whose talent and good-humoured interviews testify to the hours of hard work that go into a six-minute competition spot.

You don't have to be hip-hop mad to enjoy Scratch, just as you didn't have to be into skateboarding to appreciate Dogtown And Z-Boys. Its infectious energy will rope in everyone, regardless of whether they know their Qbert from their Schubert.

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