'Anuvahood' takes audiences through the life of a 'gangsta'

By Jerome Stuart Nichols | Life Editor
Added January 11, 2012 at 7:18 pm

Bottom Line: “Anuvahood” is funny and heart-felt, make sure to catch it on Netflix.

Admittedly, I was skeptical when the DVD for “Anuvahood” came across my desk. So skeptical, in fact, I waited about two months before I actually sat down to watch it. I really shouldn’t have waited.

“Anuvahood” tells the story of a British chap named Kenneth, excuse me, K, played Adam Deacon, who also directed the film. K’s only dream in life is to become a hip-hop star. There’s just one problem; K is not very “hip-hop.” Sure he lives in a rather rough ‘hood’ in London, but that’s the only thing that could qualify him as hip-hop.

K is really just a slacker with delusions of importance. He lives with his mother, works at a grocery store, fails to woo the ladies and has a reputation for being a bit of a ‘wanker.’ It doesn’t help that he spends his every waking moment professing how hood and tough he is.

In an attempt to prove just how hood he really is, K decides to quit his job after his manager gets after him about his habitual tardiness. Of course, this example of keeping it real comes after he’s robbed by the films protagonist Tyrone (Richie Campbell). But, just like Kenneth, we’ll forget that part.

Quitting his job leads to pressure from his mom to find a new source of income. In a well-meaning attempt to satisfy his mother, he makes a series of increasingly bad decisions that ultimately lead to the film’s climax.

Overall “Anuvahood” does really well at capturing a character that many people know quite well and making him charming and likable. That’s not an easy task, seeing as Kenneth and his façade of bravado can get quite annoying at times.

Although I wanted to dislike him, I found myself shaking my head disapprovingly and at the same time hoping that everything worked out for him in the end. The great characters in the film don’t stop with Kenneth; his hodgepodge group of friends is also quite likeable and, at times, uproariously funny.

Bookie (Femi Oyeniran), Spanish Enrique (Ollie Barbieri), Lesoi (Michael Vu) and TJ (Jazzie Zonzolo) make up his crew of, essentially, lackeys. Each character is distinct and has his or her own motivations and backstory. While they aren’t explored in any significant way, you get the feeling that these characters have a purpose for existing that extends further than just being atmosphere-setting bodies.

Of all the characters in the film, my favorite has to be Tyrone. Tyrone is almost exactly like what I would imagine the character Debo, from the 1995 comedy “Friday,” to be like if he was strung out on speed and methamphetamine. In the film, they actually use the same music that was used in “Friday” to signal Debo’s impending arrival, which is a cool Easter egg for “Friday” fans.

The actor who plays him really sells the oddly emotional and goofball thug character. Every time he was on the screen, my face scrunched up into a quizzical look of disapproval and stymied laughter.

Not only was Tyrone the best character in the film, but he also had the best scene in the movie. It is actually a sex scene, but it has to be the single worst and at the same time most comically perfect sex scene I have ever seen. Let’s just say there is no nudity, but there are feet, baby oil, ketchup and a lot of what some would questionably describe as sensual touching.

Overall “Anuvahood” is a really good movie that surpassed my expectations and actually made me a have fun. I would definitely recommend you take a risk and experience “Anuvahood.”