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in krumping


After years of the mainstream culture industry promoting black youth culture as a nihilistic celebration of guns, 'hos and gangstas, a new generation of kids in South Central L.A. has had enough. In David LaChapelle's Rize, we see how teens who barely remember the Rodney King riots have fashioned an aggressive, hyperkinetic dance style called krumping. Eschewing gang colors in favor of face paint, the kids demonstrate youth culture's astonishing ability to reinvent itself while simultaneously reclaiming traditional African forms. Big media will undoubtedly look to exploit this trend, but the subjects of Rize are savvy enough to resist being co-opted. And to the credit of LaChappelle--who earns his living as the hippest of fashion photographers--the film refrains from over-hyping its subject as the next big thing.

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