James Bernard
May 03, 1991 AT 04:00 AM EDT

New Jack City

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
performer
Ice-T, Wesley Snipes, Michael Michele, Judd Nelson, Bill Nunn, Allen Payne, Chris Rock, Mario Van Peebles, Vanessa Williams
director
Mario Van Peebles
author
Barry Michael Cooper, Thomas Lee Wright
genre
Drama, Mystery and Thriller, ActionAdventure

We gave it a C+

New Jack City is a fast and furious movie, but the soundtrack disc is slow and predictable. The music adequately conveys the film’s themes — the frustrated expectations of youth, the search for easy money in the drug trade, and other dismal realities of street life — but they’re muted by the seamless, overproduced black pop that dominates the collection and smooths over the message’s rough edges. The rap cuts come a little closer to raising our blood pressure, but not much. Even Ice-T, who convincingly crawls into the mind of a ”New Jack Hustler” on the song of that name, was more chilling with similar material on the soundtrack of ”Colors.” The good news is Guy, who get playfully loose and funky on the title track; if only the rest of the album had matched their example. C+

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