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Focusing on Drug Dealing

Film Is Bringing Bling to a Dark Story of the Streets

NEW YORK--The American Dream is invoked several times in “Superfly.” The mentions come from the movie’s lead character, and from a song on the soundtrack. These days, it seems, the phrase is often used ironically. It’s all about the accumulation of wealth and a sybaritic lifestyle. There’s no spiritual dimension, no sense of genuine civic aspiration.

Within those cynically defined contemporary parameters, Youngblood Priest (Trevor Jackson, dressed to the nines and sporting what one character derides as “Morris Day hair”) is doing well. He’s a major drug supplier in bling-driven Atlanta. He has two live-in girlfriends, the quietly sophisticated Georgia (Lex Scott Davis) and the younger, flintier Cynthia (Andrea Londo). He’s got a beautiful house and a beautiful car, commands respect, and presides over an uneasy peace with Snow Patrol, a competing drug gang that wears all white.

That peace starts fragmenting early in the picture, outside a nightclub, where an indolently truculent Snow Patrol member, Juju (Kaalan Rashad Walker), takes a shot at Priest and instead hits a bystander. Priest plays good guy by handing the victim’s friends a wad of cash and giving them the name of the best local trauma center. ...To read more, subscribe to the blackchronicle newspaper