Sept. 19, 2017
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'Patti Cake$' Review

August 30, 2017, 12:00 am

Patricia Dombrowski, aka Killa P, aka Patti Cake$, is an aspiring rapper. She’s undeniably talented, but she doesn’t fit the template of what the music industry expected a rapper to look like—she’s a fat white girl.

The “chasing your dreams” picture is not a new idea. It usually goes something like this: The main character has a talent and a dream. They usually live in a shitty place and have a shitty job, which is only extra motivation for their ultimate goal. Obstacles and rivals rise and fall in front of them, and then there’s a final test which shows off their skills, heart, dedication. It probably doesn’t matter if they win or lose.

Within that framework, director Geramy Jasper’s first feature film is pretty entertaining. Patti is charming and relatable. She’s filled simultaneously with self-confidence and self-doubt. Australian actress Danielle Macdonald gives one of those performances where it would be difficult to imagine anyone else playing the role: like Tony Soprano or Napoleon Dynamite. The story takes place in a fully developed world of suburban New Jersey’s hell of highways, parking lots and gas stations.

Jasper, who also wrote the script, imbues the world with subtle attention to detail and tough love for his characters that reminds me a bit of Mike Leigh. But ultimately, Patti Cake$ is a simple story done well, with lively performances and positive energy. (R Mitchell Miller)

+ Danielle Macdonald is a much better actor than Eminem
- Have i seen this before?

Patti Cake$
Violet Crown,
108 min

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