Music & Film

New Edition Movie Review

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Photo Credit: BET

I’m a huge fan of music biopics so I was excited when BET announced they would be premiering a New Edition movie.  Although I wasn’t born when the group came on the scene, I still love listening to a lot of their music. Even today it’s hard not to recognize a New Edition song on the radio because they have so many classic hits.

Because of my busy schedule I wasn’t able to catch the movie when everyone else was watching it, but I knew it was going to be dope based on the hilarious social media commentary.  Twitter referred to the New Edition movie premiere as the “black twitter family reunion” because so many black people were coming together to watch the film and share their thoughts about it. The movie premiere was a really big celebration for black culture!

Each part of the film had my full attention from beginning to end. I usually take breaks during watching movies to scan through my phone but this movie was so good that I couldn’t take my eyes away from the screen. That goes to show how talented the directors and writers were.

The casting was also on point. Initially when I saw that Bryshere Gray was cast in the movie I didn’t think that I would be able to look past his character Hakeem from Empire, but he proved me wrong and he did a really good job with portraying Michael Bivens. I think all the actors did an incredible job with the dance moves and the vocals. I was especially impressed with the kids who portrayed New Edition as young boys, they were just too adorable!

 

The moms of the movie were definitely one of the highlights. If you  grew up as a kid in the 90s, the momma commentary took you back to your childhood. In one scene from the movie Lisa Nicole Carson (who portrayed Ricky Bell’s mom) yells at one of her sons who tries to ask her a question while she is talking on the phone.  Her response is, “Boy don’t you see that I’m on this damn phone”!  My mom for sure hit me with that line growing up!

From watching the movie I learned a lot of history about the group that I never knew. I thought it was crazy how music executives pretty much got rich off of New Edition’s music sales while the group was still living in the projects having to use food stamps. That type of trend seemed to be the norm for a lot of entertainers during that time period.

During the film you also see that Ralph Tresvant did the majority of the singing for the group. In some scenes he would actually be in the studio recording by himself while the other group members were either at the club or hanging out with girls. The film shows his desire to go solo but the group doesn’t support his aspirations because Ralph was literally the foundation of New Edition and without him the group wouldn’t be as successful.

Another music history fact that the movie shared was how the group Boyz II Men got their start under New Edition.

The best parts of the movie were the recreation of New Edition’s music videos. Like everyone else after the film ended I went on Youtube and looked up the original videos to do a comparison and I think the directors did an amazing job with recapturing those authentic moments.

Although the film had a lot of positive moments it also showed the dark side of the group’s lives. The film revealed that Ricky Bell had a drug addiction and it also showed how the group’s conflict led to their demise.The film ended with the group reuniting in 2005 at the 25th anniversary of the BET Awards where they all performed together.

Overall I thought the movie was amazing! Besides New Edition releasing great music I think what really made the movie so good was its authenticity. In an interview with the Breakfast Club the group revealed that nothing in the film was fabricated. They even said they didn’t know some information about their group members until they actually read the script for the movie.

I gained a lot of respect for New Edition after watching the film and I’m appreciative that they were so transparent with sharing their lives with the world.

Kudos to BET for dropping one of the dopest biopics of 2017!

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