In anticipation of the upcoming 2015 Toronto Hot Docs International Festival of Documentary Cinema, The Film Corner continues its thrill-packed countdown to said event with a review of Hip Hop, Eh, my baby cousin Joe Klymkiw's feature documentary, that, to my knowledge, never played at Hot Docs, but most definitely should have played there since every screening would have been sold right the fuck out and every theatre would have been permeated with clouds of glorious ganja.
Hip Hop, Eh (2012)
Dir. Joe Klymkiw
Starring: Maestro Fresh Wes, Tom Green, Buck 65, Kardinal Offishall, Dj Kemo, Dream Warriors, Michie Mee, Cadence Weapon, Classified, Swollen Members
Review By Greg Klymkiw
Once upon a time, a nice Ukrainian boy,
Directed a doc, about his greatest joy.
You'd think this little Hunky from Winter-peg,
Would invite Heavy Metal to swell his mighty third leg.
The thing to remember as you, lock up your daughters,
Izz'zat da 'Peg's got asbestos in its muddy, muddy waters.
Little Joe quenched his thirst from those gnarly rusty pipes,
And before he damn well knew it,
He formed super-different likes.
So off to Vancouver did our little Joe go,
Cuz he needed to groove, without all the fucking snow.
His love for Hip Hop, led to lots of cool shit
And he started spinning tunes, with some mighty true grit.
For many long years, he was on the radio,
Playing Hip Hop a-plenty in that lonely studio.
And when he met dat Nardwuar, the human serviette,
He made kick-ass music vids, smooth as anisette.
Joe did wonder, long and hard, 'bout the true identity
Of dat Maple-syrup-hip-hop and its supreme-o destiny.
So he saddled up his camera, to travel far and wide,
Shooting dope Hip Hop artists, who'd not motherfucking hide.
K'naan wiped his ass, with dat bullshit waving flag.
Even Drake took a powder, what a motherfucking drag.
It mattered not to Joe, Canuck Hip Hop's loyal Ukie Son,
So good riddance to bad rubbish, cuz he interviewed a ton.
That's exactly what he did,
in his noble Hip Hop quest.
He got a mess, of super mensches,
who fuckin' proved to be the best.
And he shot 'em and he cut 'em,
till their mighty souls did bleed,
Now you got this Hip Hop movie,
So let's all watch and smoke some weed.
Kubassa and Oxtail,
kishka flavoured with dat jerk,
Jugs of tasty maple syrup,
and a hoser's best plaid shirt.
We gotsa film that answers questions,
Bout our very own Hip Hop
Lez go tuh Stevie Harper's rec-room,
Where he grow dat mighty crop.
And believe me when I say,
We not be smoking prairie wheat.
We be partyin' with our P.M.
to that Canadian Hip Hop beat.
- Greg Klymkiw,
. The Ballad of Hip Hop Joe
. (with apologies to Hip Hop lyricists the world over)
What IS the identity of Canadian Hip Hop? The fuck if I know. In fact, other than Drake (who mega-kicks) and K'naan (whom I never hope to hear again after that fucking Waving Flag shit), I know diddly about the Dominion of Canada's Hip Hop scene.
After seeing my cousin Joe Klymkiw's movie, Hip Hop, Eh, I now know more than I knew before. And screw it - so Joe's my cousin. The fuck am I supposed to do that half my family is in the entertainment business? If I didn't enjoy the movie, I'd be a man, tell him it sucked shit and then not bother writing about it. So, I'm writing about it. FUCKING SUE ME! Go ahead, motherfucker! I'll whup your ass with a glorious chub of Ukrainian garlic sausage.
The bottom line is - cousin or no cousin - I had a rip-snorting good time watching this mega-ragged indie nose dive into a uniquely Canadian world of contemporary culture I know nada about. The style, kind of like the grassroots Canadian Hip Hop scene, is raw, loose, a bit messy and jumpy, dirty, grainy, blasted-the-fuck-right-out with wall-to-wall music and the most incessantly insane parade of talking heads I've seen in some time.
But fuck me and a month of Sundays, this movie's got one mega cool talking head after another. In fact, I have never seen so many cool people wearing baseball caps assembled in one movie.
Hip Hop, Eh is short, breezy, fun, infused with genuine passion for its subject and as one of my esteemed colleagues noted in his review, the movie does at times feel like an extended music industry panel discussion on the subject.
For me, I didn't mind. I've personally never attended any music industry panels and most certainly none that smacked me in the face with the subject of Canadian identity in our country's Hip Hop scene.
THE FILM CORNER RATING: *** 3 Stars
Like the pic above says, Hip Hop, Eh is available on VOD. For further info on Joe's ultra-cool films, visit HERE.