Every Time I Die frontman Keith Buckley waxes cinematic on the more important films of our time. Sort of.
BREAKIN’ 2: ELECTRIC BOOGALOO (1984)
STARS : Adolfo “Shabba-Doo” Quinones, Michael “Boogaloo Shrimp” Chambers, Ice-T
THE PLOT: This movie is indisputably the “feel-greasy movie of the ’80s.” After watching it, I felt like some environmentally conscious volunteers should have been called to my home to scrub me down with toothbrushes. Shabba-Doo and Boogaloo Shrimp star as Ozone and Turbo, because apparently being named like American Gladiators is better than sounding like two things a homeless lady might scream at you. These two break-dancing, spine-chillingly sexually inappropriate urban youths run a community center called Miracles with their nouveau-riche friend, Kelly. The center gives jobless, lazy and apparently feral neighborhood kids a place to go to write innocuous graffiti while learning the fine trade of popping and/or locking. However, due to the building’s disrepair, a local congressman plans to tear it down and replace it with a shopping mall. To save the center, the boys enlist the help of the community and Ice-T to put on a show that will hopefully raise the $200,000 necessary to save Miracles. In a final scene—which is no less than 10 minutes fueled by the most awkward, uninteresting and latently homosexual dancing I’ve ever seen—the center is finally saved and Kelly does not have to move to Paris to become a famous dancer. She can fulfill her wildest dreams of being an unpaid “beard” in a suburb of Los Angeles. Truly a miracle.
THE POINT: While today we may find them in abundance, in the early ’80s it was nearly impossible to find a movie which invigorated and empowered the crestfallen youth of the moderately wealthy urban demographic the way Breakin’ 2 did. Capturing so entirely the outrage, passion, criminally narcissistic nature and soul of early-’80s Californian ’tweens in a way that Do The Right Thing would eventually convey the discontent of African Americans living in Brooklyn, Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo leaves us with one very important message: If you don’t want to get a job, but need a shitload of money, dress like a gay genie and dance your ass off.