Brown Sugar Review

Image for Brown Sugar

As youngsters, childhood friends Dre and Sidney witness the birth of hip hop and, as adults, remain captivated by the genre, working as a music executive and journalist respectively.


As an ode to hip-hop, Brown Sugar is over-emotional and - particularly in Lathan's voiceover - hideously sentimental. However, while the exploration of the music scene that gave us such acts as Run DMC and Public Enemy does genuinely prove intriguing, unfortunately it is used only to distract viewers from the film's rom-com core.

The symbolic connection between the two main characters and the music is evident throughout. Dre and Sidney's shared love of hip-hop reflects their mutual love for each other, while their misgivings about the evolution of the music scene is indicative of their maturing friendship. The most interesting feature, though, is the crucial display of the two supporting acts, rap artists Queen Latifah and Mos Def. As in Chicago and Bringing Down The House, she adds some fizz to the mix, while he proves that his turn in Monsters Ball was no fluke. Both provide instinctive performances with acute comic timing.

Bloody infuriating. The predictable romantic plot will leave you screaming "get a room!", while anyone even vaguely interested in hip-hop will be unimpressed.