Raps to riches… OUT 1 SEPTEMBER
Sundance hit that led Fox Searchlight to shell out $9.5 million for the rights, writer-director Geremy Jasper’s debut feature is an intoxicating tale of big dreams, dirty rhymes and familial failings. A hip-hop tale in which the lead is a scrappy white girl, it gets its hooks into you from the very first scene.
Patricia (Danielle Macdonald, brilliant) – aka ‘Killa P’ or ‘Patti Cake$’ – is a bartender and aspiring rapper from New Jersey, whose mother Barb (Bridget Everett) is a frustrated, boozy singleton. Engaging in rap battles on the streets, Patti Cake$ has raw talent, but struggles to be taken seriously as she looks to pin-up rapper O-Z for inspiration.
With Patti teaming up with a friend (Siddharth Dhananjay), a near-mute musician (Mamoudou Athie) and even her ailing grandmother (Cathy Moriarty) to cut a track under the band moniker ‘PBNJ’, the emotional beats are just as timely as the musical ones, the overriding feeling being one of authenticity. Never once pointing towards a safe Hollywood finale, however, Patti Cake$ is about far more than simply realising ambitions. What emerges is a mother-daughter tale perfectly fronted by Macdonald and Everett, whose heartrending, half-cut karaoke rendition of Heart’s ‘These Dreams’ says it all. It will leave you buzzing. James Mottram
A heartfelt crowd-pleaser, driven by a towering turn from Macdonald, this indie gem rarely puts a foot wrong. Dope.
Just keep staring straight ahead; he might just go away…