Style Wars Revisited (Public Art Films)


Style Wars may not be about music per-se, but rather a look at the roots of hip-hop culture and its effect on society. The documentary, which originally appeared on PBS, explores the rise of graffiti on the New York City subway lines, as well as break-dancing and rapping. Through interviews with the major writers of the time we learn how the artistic techniques of “tagging up” developed and what the motivation was for so many inner-city kids to get into such a dangerous and illegal hobby (most did it for the fame of having people see their name). Although many New Yorkers at the time saw graffiti as a nuisance, the writers had the last laugh as many parlayed graffiti into a successful art career. The original film is short at just sixty-nine minutes so this DVD thankfully offers up a host of crucial bonuses such as the thirty-four minute “Style Wars: Revisited” which catches up with some of the writers twenty years later – surprisingly many are still passionate about graffiti and some are even still writing! Other bonuses include four new interviews with writers from the film, a somewhat incongruous Aesop Rock video, and a thirty-minute loop of old graffiti masterpieces called Destroy All Lines. Style Wars is essential for fans of graffiti, old hip-hop or inner-city culture

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