Cinerama: Malibu’s Most Wanted

Posted: September 11, 2009 in Cinerama

Malibu’s Most Wanted

By Mike Derderian

Walking down the streets of Amman, one encounters different types of people especially in Al Sweifieh and Abdoun areas. There you come across wannabe rappers, wannabe Americans and wannabe anything but Jordanian. Makes ya wanna wonder?

I like to walk a lot especially at nights when the atmosphere is cool and breezy, despite of the noise coming out from the racing cars that pass me by.

Sometimes you see crazy things. The other day I saw a group of teenagers walking in the middle of the street in Abdoun carrying a large cassette player, listening to rap music. For a moment I felt like I was in Harlem, surrounded with black brothers who were rapping loudly in the streets mad of their society, laws and probably the way they live.

Funnily enough they were dressed like Afro-Americans with bandanas on their heads, baggy jeans pants and big boots. Yet what made me realize that they were wannabe brothers was the way they were waving and moving to the tunes coming out of the player.

Trying to look like Paff Dady, LL. Cool J and Snoop Doggy dog is not that bad, but it’s when fantasy and reality mix that our identity is threatened.

Imagine yourself wearing a real wide shirt with pants that are twice your size. Wouldn’t be funny. Yet dressing like black people is one thing and trying to become a black is another.

Recently a new line of clothing hit the market, an international brand famous in the States. The add for the trademark says: “ For us, by us”. But the very “us” here is not

us the Jordanians by the way. The outfits have been originally made for people from the other side of the continent. However, all I’m saying is that wearing clothes doesn’t define who we are. Everyone is free to wear whatever makes us comfortable as long as we don’t act like we belong to a different culture.

A few months ago “Malibu’s Most Wanted” was released dealing with such issues in a comic way. The film in a way satirizes the way some people act as if they belong to a different culture.

It was directed by John Whitesell and a cast of young comedians like Jamie Kennedy, Taye Digges, Anthony Anderson, Regina Hall, Blair Underwood and Ryan O’neal.

The movie is briefly about a white kid, Brad Glukman AKA B-Rad (Kennedy) who believes that he is a ‘black brother’ and belongs to the streets of Malibu.

This colorful character dresses, walks, talks and raps like Afro-American people. Though he sucks in rappin he still believes that he is natural.

B-Rad’s father, Bill Gluckman (O ‘ Neal) is running for governor and told by his staff that his son might jeopardize the campaign. So he decides to take him to a psychiatrist.

The doctor calls him with his white name Bradley. B-Rad reacts angrily and tells him: Why you call in me with my slave name? The doctor then decides that he needs a few years to be cured. This brings his parents to a dead end since the elections are after a few months. The election campaign might be ruined if the press knows that Glukman’s son is a “Gangsta wannabe.”

However, Tom Gibbons (Underwood), Bill’s advisor comes up with a plan to make B-Rad return to his white roots. The plan is to hire two black classically trained actors who will pretend to be two rough black gangsters from the hood.  Sean (Digges) and PJ (Anderson), after being offered 15000$, will kidnap B-Rad and take him to the roughest black neighborhood in the Ghetto with the help of Shondra (Hall).

The film is hilarious,packed with a lot of funny scenes especially the ones by Kennedy who was able to capture what a Gangsta wannabe is.

One scene is when Sean and PJ take B-Rad to a rap club to make him realize that he ain’t black and cannot rap like a brother.

After listening to a black rapper who made fun of the white rapper, it is B-Rad’s turn to blow the audience’s mind but the only thing that he manages to blow is their temper when he finishes his rap by the word “Negger” which is a racist remark. Enraged by this, the presenter throws him into the crowd that carries him out of the club and throws him into a garbage container while Sean and PJ are laughing at him hilariously.

Another funny scene is when Sean and PJ are practicing and learning Black vocabularies from a special book that teaches this strange lingo. Sentences like “ don’t ya dis me” which means don’t disturb me man. The whole film contains phrases that makes you laugh like when Shondra tells B-Rad that she allowed him to have a taste of the food not the whole kitchen in reference to his long kiss.

The film is great and makes you laugh at the way we humans sometimes act in order to belong.

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