In Theaters: Friday 2nd February 2001
Distributed by: MTI Home Video
Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5
IMDB: 4.8 / 10
Director: Dave Gebroe
Producer: Dave Gebroe
Screenwriter: Rick Kronberg
Imagine what would happen if Vanilla Ice showed up to fix the sink at Eminem's house, and you've pretty much got the gist of The Homeboy. Dave Gebroe's wacky comedy gives us fading rap star MC2 (Dave McCrea), who slowly figures out that his British sink repairman is in actuality a faded rapper named Hoolie Hooligan (David M. Wallace). "Squared" finds he's on a similar trajectory, so naturally he recruits the once-huge Hoolie to help him mix it up.
But when Hoolie gets smashed on 40s and the other trappings of the modern gangsta, things get a bit hot, and Squared sees his minor empire crumble before his eyes.
It's all played for laughs, thank God, and this little indie film has plenty of them (when you can hear the jokes, that is; bad sound is a perennial problem for indies). Wallace (who has no other screen credits but looks just like Billy Connolly) is often hilarious -- my favorite moment being when Hoolie puts a chopstick in a pencil sharpener to invent the "sharpstick" -- both eating utensil and deadly weapon.
The same can't be said for McCrea, who is supposed to be a pitiable semi-loser despite his triple platinum stature but is really just an unlikeable cad who you want to see get his comeuppance. Unfortunately, Gebroe puts Squared in a hero's boots -- even taking us down one ill-advised path that has the guy falling in love with the waitress at a Chinese restaurant and then trashing her parents' bathroom. Those expecting a Wayne's World type kung fu showdown with dad will be let down.
The lone "star" in the film is MTV's Julie Brown ("Downtown" Julie Brown, not fat Julie Brown), who essentially plays herself with a different name and working for a different music television channel. Her subplot, which involves her anger over Squared's use of the N-word, goes on for a looooooong time ultimately to get paid off by a small gag from Hoolie in the end. But like the Chinese family arc, it doesn't really make it.
Thanks to Wallace's scenes -- and I wish there were more of them -- the film is watchable and often enjoyable. It'll take some doing to get this indie into a bunch of theaters, but should you stumble upon it on cable one drunken night, give it a go.
To yo mutha!