February Film Review: Hip-Hop Evolution

“Hip Hop Evolution” is a 4-part Netflix series that goes back to the beginning of Hip Hop Culture in the Bronx, NY. The series delves deep into the essence of the culture through interviews with some of Hip Hop’s greatest emcees and dee jays. Released in September of 2016 the series stars Rapper Shad Kabango as he travels throughout New York and makes a pit-stop on the West Coast interviewing those who started the culture of Hip Hop as we know it today. Written by Rodrigo Bascuñán the series explores the foundation, the transition into mainstream, the Def Jam era, and West Coast Gangster Rap. With each episode lasting about an hour you can expect to get an in depth look at what it was to be in the streets of the Bronx at that time.

The series would also be suitable in a classroom setting. Ideally for history, humanities, or a similar class. As a fan and a student of Hip Hop this series is dope. For the parents who want to educate their children this series is something you can watch along with them. The series actually reminded me of “The Get Down” as far as how they depicted the early years but other than that I have no major qualms with this series and I truly enjoyed watching it. I don’t binge watch but if that’s your thing or you have a little extra time I recommend watching “Hip Hop Evolution”. Anytime a producer(s) go the extra mile to interview those who were actually there making the history, you can’t go wrong. Watching DJ Grandmaster Flash demonstrate how he created dee jay techniques that would revolutionize the game was remarkable.

Learning small things that you may not have known before or seeing the rise of Def Jam from behind the scenes. I look forward to a Season 2 and I hope that Shad can go a little deeper into West Coast, Southern, and Midwest Hip Hop scenes. These are the types of projects that we need to support and watch so that we can get similar projects made. The graphics, design, and cinematography was all appropriate and seamless from what I could tell. I applaud those who were involved in this project. These types of films and documentaries need to be noticed by the mainstream so the world knows that Hip Hop Culture is still alive and thriving without any mumbling.

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