Directed by Salima Koroma
Official Selection, 2016 Tribeca Film Festival
Audience Award (Documentary), 2016 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
Dumbfoundead, Awkwafina, Rekstizzy, and Lyricks: four Asian American rappers with their hearts set on the glamor of stardom and universal acclaim. Of course, climbing the charts is a tall task, and the rungs of the ladder to the top are invariably riddled with thorns.
For Dumbfoundead, it’s his self-doubt; for Awkwafina, the shelf life of her appeal; for Rekstizzy, his bizarre aesthetic; and for Lyricks, his family obligations. Fear and uncertainty abound, every artist struggles, but not every rapper can keep pace with the unyielding resolve of our fantastic four, who despite their vulnerabilities continue to dredge up the strength to drop catchy beats, spit fiery lyrics, and flaunt their provocative visuals. From off-the-cuff rap battles where dissing race is fair game, to music videos involving spraying burger condiments onto twerking dancers, every freshly woven rhyme is yet another promise to carve out their place in a society that expects them to be blue ribbon science fair winners instead of hip-hop virtuosos.
BAD RAP shoots for explosive and reaches the liveliness of a July Fourth fireworks parade. From the outset, colorful rhythms and the addictive energy of a live concert stoke our imagination, leaving us in awe of just how exuberant a hip-hop documentary can be. –Thomas Jin
Underwritten by: National Asian Pacific American Bar Association
Co-presented by: USD Torero Program Board (TPB)