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In the Triangle it is very hard nowadays to have an all ages hip-hop event. There are no more Public Enemy day-shows and there are no battles in the park. But through the blinding light of the icy force-feed mainstream hip hop, DADA, the Durham Association for Downtown Arts, is bringing you the darkness, the underground, the real nitty gritty of hip hop. The Hip Hop Film Festival (HHFF) is "on a mission to spread the wild styles and core messages of the hip-hop nation far and wide." (See page 67 for the full story.)

HHFF will be showing 11 films beginning on Thursday, Sept. 19 at the Durham Armory, first off Graffiti Verite at 7 p.m.; Nobody Knows My Name, which is about the wonderful, but hard life of women in hip hop, at 8:15 p.m.; and Scratch, the biggest DJing flick to date, at 9:45 p.m. On Friday, Sept. 20, still at the Armory, see Breathcontrol, the history of human beatboxing, and Estillo Hip-Hop, a work-in-progress work about South American hip-hop music and culture at 7 p.m.; Straight Outta Hunters Point, "the positive impact of hip hop culture on a stricken California ghetto," at 9:30; and Freestyle: The Art of Rhyme, featuring some freestyle giants, at 11:15 p.m. On Saturday, Sept. 21, there will be screenings at N.C. Central University starting at 1:30 p.m. with WORD, "a moving profile of the independent Hip Hop scene." At 3 p.m., Cuba Amore, a love story taken place in the Cuban underground hip-hop scene. At 5 p.m., watch a local film, that at press time has yet to be announced. And finally at 7 p.m., Voice of the Voiceless: Hip Hop Activism to Free Convicted Prisoner from Death Row, and 9 p.m. Freestyle: The Evolution of Rap Storytelling.

HHFF coordinator Todd Hickey says, "This collection of films transcends the hip-hop genre and moves the discussion into more social conscious topics. Basically our goal is to promote personal and social responsibilty through hip hop. For people who don't know hip hop, our aim is to redefine it from what they know normally on commerical radio into an active political forum."

I strongly suggest that if you are interested, disgusted, confused, or know nothing at all about hip hop, and then you should come to the HHFF. And I better not hear any complaining about a lack of good hip-hop entertainment from any "hip-hop head" unless you have a legit excuse for not showing y'alls mugs in Durham this weekend. --K8 Erwin

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