Maybe the most professional of the early hip-hop film classics, Beat Street was released in 1984 and tells the story of aspiring superstar* b-boys from the South Bronx. Unlike its contemporaries – think Wild Style and Krush Groove – Street transcends camp and, even today, remains more than a mere curiosity of hip-hop’s original Golden Age. A genuinely decent film, it will make you wish you were present for that fleeting period when being a b-boy meant dabbling in all four of hip-hop’s elements and fights were settled on the dance floor rather than through more violent means.
And even if you ain’t feelin’ the film for its artistic merits, it’s worth watching for appearances from a host of early hip-hop luminaries, including Us Girls, The Treacherous Three, The System, Rock Steady Crew, Soul Sonic Force & Shango, The Magnificent Force, New York City Breakers, Furious Five, Tina B., Afrika Bambaataa, and Johnny B. Bad.
Check it out:
* From maybe the best line in the film:”Charlie, superstar is not a profession.”