Drumline (2002)

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What “Drumline” does is give the American audience a perspective into something entirely fresh and original to watch while focusing on a relatively obscure practice called band and succeeds in every way shape and form possible. Every character in the film takes this practice seriously and treats it as if it’s life or death, and we can see why. It’s evident that there’s no glamorizing or watering down of any kind in the film, what we’re watching is in fact reality with the facade of Hollywood and it pulled me in right from the opener. It’s a shame films of this ilk don’t make it into theaters often.

There’s a society and an entire institution that’s exposed and revealed in “Drumline” that has rarely ever been seen by the outside world before, and all of it is nothing but sheer originality and energy. Not only is this film shockingly original and innovative, but it has a great cast to boot. Nick Cannon holds this movie on his shoulders and handles the job as main character with much charisma. Orlando Jones has the most memorable role in the film as Dr. Lee a quiet but disciplined character who loves old music and uses it in the band, but is pressured to use modern music to keep his job. Jones is a talented actor and handles this dramatic role with incredible dexterity. Shay Roundtree is a truly good supporting character to that of Devon’s and helps to increase the tension in the film.

The beautiful Zoey Saldana is an apt love interest and often outshines Cannon in love scenes. If you watch this movie, watch it simply for the incredible and energetic climax. Director Charles Stone III directs this with much skill and length as if he studied and knew the material he was focusing on and took every effort possible to make it look like ballet. In the large band scenes he give incredible wide shots for the audience to watch for, and when there’s a moment requiring it, he gives incredible close-up shots on the characters that help increase the event we’re experiencing with much energy and excitement. I really enjoyed “Drumline,” and was riveted from the beginning to the end. Any fan of music needs to watch this.