|Boyz n the Hood|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||John Singleton|
|Produced by||Steve Nicolaides|
|Written by||John Singleton|
|Music by||Stanley Clarke|
|Edited by||Bruce Cannon|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|Box office||$57.5 million (North America)|
Boyz n the Hood is a 1991 American teen hood drama film written and directed by John Singleton in his directorial debut, and starring Ice Cube, Cuba Gooding Jr., Morris Chestnut, Laurence Fishburne, Nia Long and Angela Bassett, depicting life in South Central Los Angeles, California. This was the first film debut for Ice Cube and Morris Chestnut.
Boyz n the Hood filmed in South Central Los Angeles, California from October 1 to November 28, 1990 and released in the United States on July 12, 1991. It was nominated for both Best Director and Original Screenplay during the 1991 Academy Awards, making Singleton the youngest person ever nominated for Best Director and the first African–American to be nominated for the award.
The film was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival. In 2002, the United States Library of Congress deemed the film "culturally significant" and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry.
||This article's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (March 2015)|
In 1984, ten-year-old Tre Styles (Desi Arnez Hines II) lives with his single mother Reva (Angela Bassett) in Inglewood, California. After Tre gets involved in a fight at school, his teacher calls Reva and informs her that although Tre is rather intelligent, he is immature, and lacks respect. Frightened about the future of her child, Reva sends him to live in the Crenshaw neighborhood of South Central Los Angeles with his father, Furious Styles (Laurence Fishburne), from whom she hopes Tre will learn valuable life lessons. In Crenshaw, Tre reunites with his childhood friends, Darrin "Doughboy" Baker, Doughboy's maternal half-brother Ricky, and Chris, their mutual friend. That night, Tre hears his father shooting at a burglar who tried to rob the house. Police officers arrive more than an hour later, and while the Caucasian officer is civil if not as alert as he should be, the African-American officer treats Furious with disrespect and contempt.
Seven years later, a "welcome home" party is being held in the Baker home. Doughboy (Ice Cube) is now a part of the Crips, along with Chris (Redge Green), who is now in a wheelchair from a gunshot wound. "Dookie" (Dedrick D. Gobert), and "Monster" are also at the party. Ricky (Morris Chestnut), now a star running-back for Crenshaw High School, lives at home with his mother Brenda (Tyra Ferrell), girlfriend Shanice (Alysia Rogers), and their toddler son. Meanwhile, Tre (Cuba Gooding Jr.) has grown into a mature and responsible teenager, who hopes to attend college with his girlfriend, Brandi (Nia Long).
Later, during a local street racing gathering, Ricky is provoked by Ferris (Raymond Turner), a member of the rival Bloods gang. In defense of Ricky, Doughboy brandishes his handgun, leading to a brief argument between the two gangs. After they leave, Tre and Ricky are pulled over by the police. The lead officer, who turns out to be the same one who responded to the burglary call made by Furious seven years earlier, deliberately intimidates and threatens Tre with his gun, knowing he can't do anything. Distraught, Tre goes to Brandi's house, where he finally breaks down. After she consoles him, they have sex for the first time.
The next afternoon, Ricky has a fight with Doughboy, with Brenda quickly taking Ricky's side and berating Doughboy. While Ricky and Tre walk to a nearby drugstore, they see Ferris and the Bloods driving around the neighborhood and cut through back alleys and separate to avoid them. However, the Bloods find Ricky and murder him. Tre and Doughboy carry Ricky's corpse back home, where Brenda and Shanice hysterically blame Doughboy, who unsuccessfully tries to comfort them. Later that night, Brenda sobs over Ricky's SAT test results, discovering he earned a 710, just enough to qualify for the USC scholarship he wanted.
Angered and distraught, the remaining boys vow vengeance on the Bloods. Furious finds Tre preparing to take his pistol, but he eventually convinces Tre to abandon his plans for revenge. However, Brandi and Furious catch Tre sneaking out of his bedroom window to join Doughboy. Later that night, as the gang drives around the city, Tre asks to be let out of the car and returns home, realizing that his father was right to keep him from falling into the cycle of violence. Doughboy finds the Bloods eating at a local fast-food restaurant, and Monster opens fire on them in a drive-by shooting. Doughboy gets out of his car and personally executes Ferris and the other wounded gang member while Ferris begs for his life in vain, avenging Ricky's death.
The next morning, Doughboy visits Tre, now understanding Tre's reasons for abandoning the gang. Doughboy knows that he will soon face retaliation for Ferris' death, and accepts the consequences of his crime-ridden life. He plaintively questions why America "don't know, don't show, or don't care about what's going on in the hood". He sorrowfully says that he has no brothers left now after Ricky's death, but is embraced by Tre, who says Doughboy "still got one brother left." Doughboy then walks away, pouring out his malt liquor.
In the epilogue text, it is revealed that Doughboy is murdered two weeks later in retaliation. However, Tre and Brandi resume their relationship, and go on to attend Morehouse and Spelman in Atlanta, respectively.
Boyz n the Hood received universal acclaim. Review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 96% based on 49 reviews, with an average score of 8.3/10, making the film a "Certified Fresh" on the website's rating system. At Metacritic, which assigns a weighted mean rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the film received an average score of 73%, based on 18 reviews, which indicates "Generally favorable reviews".
The film has been referenced innumerable times in other works, including works by Lupe Fiasco, Game and by Ice Cube himself. In 1994, British jungle DJ duo Remarc and Lewi produced a song titled "Ricky". The song itself is built up of various sound bites from the movie, particularly the scene where Ricky is murdered. Ice Cube's song, "It Was a Good Day", also slightly references the film.
On the July 12, 2011 episode of her self-titled talk show, Mo'Nique celebrated the 20th anniversary of the release of Boyz n the Hood with director John Singleton, Cuba Gooding Jr., Yo-Yo, and Regina King.
BMI Film Music Award: 1992
Image Award: 1993
National Film Preservation Board, USA: 2002
Political Film Society, USA: 1992
Writers Guild of America, USA: 1992
In 2007, Boyz n the Hood was selected as one of the 50 Films To See in your lifetime by Channel 4.
|Year||Album||Peak chart positions||Certifications|
|1991||Boyz n the Hood||12||1||
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