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[Walk Like a Man] Murs 3:16: Walk Like a Man
Label: Legendary Music

Author: Steve 'Flash' Juon

On the front cover of this DVD and plastered across the title menu are the following words: a short film inspired by 'Murs 3:16 the 9th Edition.' If the starting basis for a movie is "Murs 3:16 the 9th Edition" then you're already in good shape. Despite being something of a short film itself at only ten tracks and 35 minutes in length, the album was widely hailed by hip-hop critics as one of the best releases in 2004, and with good reason. 9th Wonder is the musical genius whose soulful touch has turned out classic beats on one Little Brother album after another. For his part Murs is an underappreciated maestro who weaves together deft lyrical intelligence and street hustling like a genetic mutant crossbreed of Pharoahe Monch and Ras Kass. You wouldn't expect anything less than greatness with 9th and Murs on the same team, and that's exactly what they delivered.

The movie that accompanies their already cinematic film is no less impressive. The film follows the lives of two rap artists who are looking to make it big: Murray (Murs) the MC and Pete (Damian Wigfall) the producer. The film opens with the two discussing how every herb on the block wants to come up by either rhyming off them or against them. Pete asks if this kid who wanted to battle Murs thought he was Ric Flair, and the movie drops in a clip of the Nature Boy himself screaming his head off. Murs responds "Nah Rick James" and we get a clip of Dave Chappelle screaming "Fuck yo' couch nigga fuck yo' couch!" Only a few minutes into the movie and it's already some funny-ass cool shit. We move on to a bunch of dudes getting smoked out at the crib discussing hip-hop. When one cat asks for a little critical analysis of whether or not Big and 'Pac are really the two best lyricists of all time (when you put martyrdom and hero worship aside that's a damn good question - I mean are they really better than Rakim or Gift of Gab) they all look at him like he's smoked too MUCH. Murs rings the doorbell and interrupts their game of dominos. Refusing to comment on their debate, he heads to the back room to find Pete making beats. Murs is depressed that his rap skills aren't paying the bills, and Pete tells him you gotta love the struggle. Murs: "Don't feel too much like love right now. Feels like I'm just fucking this bitch." Pete tells him he's got the remedy, handwrites a label on a tape and throws it at him - "3:16."

Murs takes the tape home and throws it in his tape deck, and tries to get in the groove to write rhymes. His girl calls in the celly though and Murs tells her to come through. Needless to say lovemaking ensues. Afterwards the two get into a debate about analog versus digital when she picks up a stack of tapes off his desk, including the "3:16" joint. She asks wouldn't a CD be better, to which he responds that the love put into making a tape with countless dubs and redubs is symbolic of the struggle it takes to be a hip-hop artist. Maybe he's got a point - after all mixtapes are still around to this very day. Another girl drops by to see how Murs is doing and she says she heard some shit about his boy Trevor, and we get a short hilarious animated clip narrated with a Murs rap about a man who might possibly be the world's stupidest criminal.

Now this review could run down the entire rest of this movie down scene by scene, but if I did I'd be spoiling half the fun of watching this, and the film is definitely worth watching. It's the classic tale of a struggling artist trying to get ahead the right way, but beset on all sides by negativity and people in the hood who are up to no good. If you know the song "Walk Like a Man" that this film draws it's name from though, suffice it to say it's very relevant to the plot when some bad shit goes down. And here's a little food for thought - how many hip-hop films have you seen lately that end with a quote from Nietzsche? You might think that the shit is too deep based on that, but like 99% of the public that's the biggest misconception about Murs. Just because he's an intelligent rap cat doesn't mean he can't use that intelligence to craft a song anybody can relate to. Murs isn't necessarily about going over your head, he's about going head and shoulders over his fellow MC's with a better flow and using words to their fullest poetic and emotional effect. What's even doper about "Walk Like a Man" is that when the movie's over, it ain't over motherfuckers. The special features menu includes four music videos, including one for a remix of the song "H.U.S.T.L.E." featuring WWE superstar John Cena. I'm dead serious about that. And if it wasn't enough that the album inspired a short movie, guess what? THE MOVIE INSPIRED A SOUNDTRACK. Included as a bonus disc with "Walk Like a Man" is a dope 11 song CD that has the aforementioned remix along with dope cuts like "Love is a Pimp" by Atmosphere and "Dead Presidents" by Blueprint.

The funny thing about "Walk Like a Man" is that any presentation by Murs would be worth purchasing in it's own right. If this were just a short film it would be tight on that basis alone. If this were one of the "DVD singles" that's all the rage these days with just the Murs music videos, that would be all to the good too. The soundtrack? You know it's all that and a bag of chips too. Given that most retailers are only charging about $15 for the package, you've got to figure you're getting at least one if not two of those three damn near for free. If you've been sleeping like Rip Van Winkle on Murs, there's no better time to get a wake-up call than this movie. Murs is funny, thought-provoking, and as fresh in front of the camera as he is behind the microphone; and the one thing he definitely ISN'T is boring. If you don't believe me just rent it and see, but you'll still want to cop it afterward to watch and listen to again and again.

Content: 9 of 10 Layout: 9 of 10 TOTAL Vibes: 9 of 10

Originally posted: October 11, 2005
source: www.RapReviews.com


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