When I first heard that Soulja Boy was doing a mini-movie remake of Juice and reviving Tupac Shakur’s role as Bishop, I thought to myself: “What…no Law and Order guest spot first?”
Don’t get it twisted. I’m not trying to hate on Soulja Boy or question if he can fill Tupac’s tats. While I do have my reservations about remaking the film – even if it’s only for BET – I can’t help but think about the bigger picture. Is this a subtle attempt to remake the 1990s and its aesthetics?
I’m not mad at the 1990s at all. I’m a ‘90s girl who witnessed and experienced some great Hip-Hop and Black pop culture moments: new episodes of black sitcoms like Martin, Living Single, and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, BET when it actually had music videos all day, OJ getting acquitted, and the rise and tragic falls of Tupac and Notorious B.I.G. Although I was a little too young to go see movies like Juice in theatres, I appreciated them all the more when I snuck to watch them at my cousin’s house.
For a little context regarding Black folks and film, Craig Watkins’ book Representing is a great starting point. Representing discusses the role of film in establishing markers and understandings of Blackness at the end of the 20th century. Watkins’ definition of the “ghettocentric imagination” suggests the explosion of the 1990s ‘hood film genre provided a space for contemporary Black youth expression. It also catered to a problematic embracing of Black identity, particularly in the realm of Black manhood. This is reflected not only by the ‘hood film’s popularity but its accompanying soundtrack. The music reflected the same dark, nihilistic, and hopeless outlook of many urban Black youth in the 1990s America.
As you probably guess, I'm white, so I don't understand anything this dude on Allhiphop is saying. That being said, I DO know a bad remake idea when I see one, and a terrible actor. Soulja Boy in "Juice" has my "Gigli" radar going off like a motherfucker. My guess is it will make about 5 million dollars the first weekend. Or go straight to DVD.
The editorial does end with something I can agree with...
Hopefully Soulja Boy doesn’t suck.
You said it man.