Critic Consensus: Featuring a starmaking performance from Shameik Moore and a refreshingly original point of view from writer-director Rick Famuyiwa, Dope is smart, insightful entertainment.
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as Austin Jacoby
as Lisa Hayes
as Mr. Bailey
as The Rapper
as Crip 1
as Councilman Blackmon
as Tannehill James
as SAT Proctor
as The Voice
as Fidel X
as Allen the Bouncer
as DEA Tech
as AJ's Receptionist
as Test Taker
as Dom's Crew 1
as Young Malcolm
as The Narrator
News & Interviews for Dope
Critic Reviews for Dope
What is refreshing about Dope is its cheerful irreverence.
An authentic inner-city parable that fails to live up to its initial promise.
This coming of age story set in South Central LA may not know quite what it wants to say, but it sure has fun saying it.
Dope is a high-school comedy written with wit, brio and the unexpected twist of a geeky hero who wants to go to Harvard, but finds himself in [a] drug-dealing snakepit.
Dope is a film that you find yourself longing to like, but the strain of disappointment takes its toll.
Rather than judging his characters for turning to crime, Famuyiwa makes society the target of his anger; implying that in an unequal world, even a kid as bright as Malcolm has little chance of succeeding by honest methods alone.
Audience Reviews for Dope
Upon my viewing of "Dope," the trailers sell the film as a group of kids who are 90's obsessed and get involved with drugs and things of the like. While that is essentially the plot, do not let that fool you. This film is for teenagers, film lovers, 90's obsessors and even a touch of emotion on the race side. This film has so many levels of craftsmanship that it demands multiple viewings. The lead, played by Shameik Moore, in what I believe to be his breakout role, is terrific as Malcolm. While dealing with bullies, trying to get into Harvard, trying to enjoy his time with friends, and getting involved in drugs, he is able to make that all seem believable. The underlying message that this film sets up is terrific and it is paid off wonderfully. Very unique editing choices, great direction, fantastic and fun performances all around, "Dope" is easily one of my favourite films of 2015. It's themes are pretty mature for anyone under the age of 18 to really get anything out of it, but if you do, it will be powerful. "Dope" is, well, Dope!
The interesting take here is of an outcasts among outcasts among outcasts, to wit, an urban black youth who actually wants to go to college (heavens to murgatroid!), who is in fact a nerd, who likes punk music, and who tenderly navigates the usually strains of the coming-of-age opera. The set-up was alright, but then the mandatory glorification of the drug culture part came up and nearly lost me. All of the this-is-supposed-to-be-cool scenes, well, I must've grown past that because I didn't find it too cool at all (like making out with a naked woman out-of-her-mind on MDA). As I've been told once or twice by the fresh generation: whatever.
Bumping with an emphatic fuse of nostalgic-90s-vibes mixed with a new-generation-essence, Dope is a infectious blend of entertainment. The satire, direction and visuals are just a few of the striking chords of this modern-day coming-of-age film that make this an underrated, overnight success. 4.5/5
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