"8 Mile" is the new film that features controversial rapper Eminem in his first starring role. The film itself is loosely based on his life growing up in Detroit. Eminem plays Jimmy Smith, Jr. a.k.a. "Rabbit", a young man who is struggling to make things better for himself through "battles", which are freestyling rap contests that are usually held at a local nightclub. Rabbit chokes when it is his turn to take the microphone for the first time. His best friend, Future (Mekhi Phifer) is the host of these battles and strongly believes Rabbit has potential, but the problem is that Future often makes his decisions before consulting with Rabbit first. Rabbit's home life is not much better. He's broke, has no place to live, he's stuck in a dead-end job at a steel mill, and his girlfriend Janeane (Taryn Manning) has fooled him into thinking that she is pregnant. Rabbit's mother (Kim Basinger), is on the verge of being evicted from her home and is slutting around with a man who is about the same age as her son. Things in Rabbit's life take a turn for the better when he later falls in love with Alex (Brittany Murphy), an aspiring young woman who dreams of becoming a model and moving to New York to start life a new.
"8 Mile" certainly is a moving and very touching drama. Eminem proves here that he really can act and in fact may have a future in motion pictures. This does not mean we will be hearing him thanking his producer Paul Rosenberg next year at the Oscars, but we can expect to him to receive a lot of praise for future movie roles. It's quite obvious that some people will not like "8 Mile", just because of Eminem's controversial history. The film also has one of the best soundtracks I've heard in a long time. Eminem's hit single "Lose Yourself" really does have a lot emotion put into it.
Eminem, since he burst onto the music scene in 1999 with his critically-acclaimed/lambasted album "The Slim Shady LP", he has been met with a lot of controversy, as well as praise. Despite the often humorous content of his songs, there are many dark under tones in them as well. In my opinion, too much has been made about his lyrics, most of which revolve around topics like homophobia, murder, and his failed relationship with his on/off wife, Kim. Despite all of this, I think that people have overlooked the fact that he said the only thing that truly matters to him is his daughter, Hailie Jade. Also, if people believed Eminem really was a homophobic, do you still think he would have agreed to perform "Stan" with Elton John?
As a longtime fan of Eminem and his music, I try not to let such criticisms get to me, but sometimes you just have to say "What the hell? Are they really necessary?" I don't think so. The problem is that people today are just too biased when it comes to people like Eminem. He's not another Vanilla Ice and "8 Mile" is not an attempt to cash in on his success like "Cool As Ice" was.
I have a list of grievances that people need to realize about Eminem:
- First of all, do not disrespect this man. I feel that many of the people who hate Eminem have never actually listened to one of his songs. In my opinion, they have only listened to small clips that have been played on some discussion about his controversial lyrics. If you actually listened to some of his songs, you'll realize that he is a very distraught young person with a lot to say.
- Don't watch "8 Mile" with a predetermined mindset. People who have already made up their minds about Eminem's talents are less likely to enjoy themselves much more than people who believe in him.
- To non-believers, if Eminem really did not have any talent, like so many people seem to think now, how is it that all of his records: "The Slim Shady LP", "The Marshall Mathers LP", "Devils Night" (with group D-12) and "The Eminem Show" together have grossed more than $12 million? I think that it is a clear sign of TRUE TALENT.
- Also do you believe had Eminem been black and rapping about such "controversial" subject matter, that he would be famous like he is now? No, because most likely no one would dare even produce him. That said, I'm African-American and I don't care that Eminem is white and is rapping about such things.
- I think that too many people have made his race too big of an issue. Eminem knows that he is white and will be nothing else. He does not display to us a "thuggish" image that some people think that any rapper should have. Also, he does not rap about the things that some people seem to think is destroying rap music.
Eminem does have quite a future in store for him. I'm sure that we can expect to be seeing a lot more of him later on.