Having forged a 20-year run as one of the most innovative and influential hip-hop bands of all time, A Tribe Called Quest has kept a generation hungry for more of its groundbreaking music since the group’s much-publicized breakup in 1998. The band shaped a unique sound by wedding jazz-infused musicscapes to Afrocentric rhymes espousing unity and community. Its music became the anthem for cool and broke down barriers for people who had never before connected with hip-hop. In spite of unparalleled artistic success, however, the group encountered pitfalls that eventually caused its tumultuous breakup.
Beats, Rhymes & Life, the feature directorial debut of acclaimed actor Michael Rapaport, documents the inner workings and behind-the-scenes drama that follow the band even today and explores what’s next for a group many claim are the pioneers of alternative rap. Rapaport’s passion for his subjects allows them to open up to the camera, resulting in a remarkably honest, emotional portrait that does justice to this seminal band.
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