All Eyez on Me
The life and death of rapper Tupac Shakur (Demetrius Shipp Jr.). Shipp, making his acting debut, bears a startling resemblance to Shakur, and his strong performance would be a real breakout if the movie itself were better. But it draws more power from memories of Shakur than from anything director Benny Boom or writers Jeremy Haft, Eddie Gonzalez and Steven Bagatourian bring to the table. The movie lurches around inside a clumsy framework of a jailhouse interview, and it still takes 2 hours and 20 minutes to chronicle the rapper’s short life. Except for Shipp and Dominic L. Santana (a menacing presence as producer Suge Knight), it’s strictly Amateur Night at the Biopic Factory. Most amateurish of all is Danai Gurira as Shakur’s mother—though, to be fair, she’s saddled with the most unspeakable lines. J.L.