Demetrius Shipp Jr in All Eyez on Me. Photo by Quantrell Colbert
Demetrius Shipp Jr in All Eyez on Me. Photo by Quantrell Colbert

Film review: All Eyez on Me fails to bring out the real story of Tupac Shakur



All Eyez on Me

Director: Benny Boom

Stars: Demetrius Shipp Jr, Danai Gurira, Kat Graham

Two stars

It has been a long and winding road to the big screen for the Tupac Shakur biopic All Eyez on Me, with a revolving door in the production office through which directors and writers having passed since the film was announced in 2011.

Director Benny Boom came on board in 2015, and one suspects the movie’s fractured production process might have contributed to his disjointed offering.

The weakest link here is undoubtedly the script, which is strange, because this is a movie that should really write itself.

Born in 1971 to Black Panther Party-member parents, Shakur spent his childhood being shunted around the United States, while his mother evaded the authorities, eventually settling in Los Angeles, where he befriended some of the hip-hop’s biggest players.

He became the first artist to achieve a platinum-selling album while in prison, for sexual assault, and achieved legendary status in the gangsta rap scene. He became involved in gang violence and the East Coast-West Coast hip-hop war, and was eventually murdered in a drive-by shooting while travelling in Death Row Records boss Suge Knight’s car. The case is still unsolved.

All the ingredients are there, then, but the movie comes across like a fan film – there is an assumption that the audience is already familiar with the source material, so key characters in the hip-hop scene and the story drift in and out without so much as an introduction, never mind fully rounded characterisation.

If you have a working knowledge of the back story, you should just about be able to piece together who is who and what is happening – but if you’re not familiar with Tupac’s story, you are likely to be left somewhat bemused.

Boom has chosen to shoot the movie in a highly literal, biographical style – “Tupac did this, then this happened, and then he did this”. This means we learn plenty about what he did, but nothing about who he was.

The film is more like a dramatisation of a biography than a serious character study of a legendary, conflicted, flawed, fascinating character.

The dialogue, too, is often clumsy – which is ironic since Tupac’s words were inspirational to many.

The film does improve as it goes on, and by the final third, it begins to look like the accomplished work it set out to be. By then, though, the damage has already been done.

It is almost as if a student in a beginners’ film class was given a camera and told to make a movie of someone’s life story, in chronological order – after an hour or so they have learnt the ropes, and are beginning to get the hang of it – just in time for the closing credits to roll. But for parts of the movie’s early section, I was not sure if I would make it that far.

All Eyez on Me is in cinemas now

cnewbould@thenational.ae

Turning waste into fuel

Average amount of biofuel produced at DIC factory every month: Approximately 106,000 litres

Amount of biofuel produced from 1 litre of used cooking oil: 920ml (92%)

Time required for one full cycle of production from used cooking oil to biofuel: One day

Energy requirements for one cycle of production from 1,000 litres of used cooking oil:
▪ Electricity - 1.1904 units
▪ Water- 31 litres
▪ Diesel – 26.275 litres

KEY DATES IN AMAZON'S HISTORY

July 5, 1994: Jeff Bezos founds Cadabra Inc, which would later be renamed to Amazon.com, because his lawyer misheard the name as 'cadaver'. In its earliest days, the bookstore operated out of a rented garage in Bellevue, Washington

July 16, 1995: Amazon formally opens as an online bookseller. Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought becomes the first item sold on Amazon

1997: Amazon goes public at $18 a share, which has grown about 1,000 per cent at present. Its highest closing price was $197.85 on June 27, 2024

1998: Amazon acquires IMDb, its first major acquisition. It also starts selling CDs and DVDs

2000: Amazon Marketplace opens, allowing people to sell items on the website

2002: Amazon forms what would become Amazon Web Services, opening the Amazon.com platform to all developers. The cloud unit would follow in 2006

2003: Amazon turns in an annual profit of $75 million, the first time it ended a year in the black

2005: Amazon Prime is introduced, its first-ever subscription service that offered US customers free two-day shipping for $79 a year

2006: Amazon Unbox is unveiled, the company's video service that would later morph into Amazon Instant Video and, ultimately, Amazon Video

2007: Amazon's first hardware product, the Kindle e-reader, is introduced; the Fire TV and Fire Phone would come in 2014. Grocery service Amazon Fresh is also started

2009: Amazon introduces Amazon Basics, its in-house label for a variety of products

2010: The foundations for Amazon Studios were laid. Its first original streaming content debuted in 2013

2011: The Amazon Appstore for Google's Android is launched. It is still unavailable on Apple's iOS

2014: The Amazon Echo is launched, a speaker that acts as a personal digital assistant powered by Alexa

2017: Amazon acquires Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, its biggest acquisition

2018: Amazon's market cap briefly crosses the $1 trillion mark, making it, at the time, only the third company to achieve that milestone

Company Profile

Company name: Hoopla
Date started: March 2023
Founder: Jacqueline Perrottet
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 10
Investment stage: Pre-seed
Investment required: $500,000

Top 10 most competitive economies

1. Singapore
2. Switzerland
3. Denmark
4. Ireland
5. Hong Kong
6. Sweden
7. UAE
8. Taiwan
9. Netherlands
10. Norway

Specs: 2024 McLaren Artura Spider

Engine: 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 and electric motor
Max power: 700hp at 7,500rpm
Max torque: 720Nm at 2,250rpm
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
0-100km/h: 3.0sec
Top speed: 330kph
Price: From Dh1.14 million ($311,000)
On sale: Now

Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5

Meydan race card

6.30pm: Maiden; Dh165,000; (Dirt) 1,200m
7.05pm: Handicap; Dh170,000; (D) 1,200m​​​​​​​
7.40pm: Maiden; Dh165,000; (D) 1,900m​​​​​​​
8.15pm: Handicap; Dh185,000; (D) 2,000m​​​​​​​​​​​​​​
8.50pm: Handicap; Dh185,000; (D) 1,600m​​​​​​​
9.25pm: Handicap; Dh165,000; (D) 2,000m

Recipe: Spirulina Coconut Brothie

Ingredients
1 tbsp Spirulina powder
1 banana
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (full fat preferable)
1 tbsp fresh turmeric or turmeric powder
½ cup fresh spinach leaves
½ cup vegan broth
2 crushed ice cubes (optional)

Method
Blend all the ingredients together on high in a high-speed blender until smooth and creamy. 

THE RESULTS

5pm: Maiden (PA) Dh80,000 1,400m

Winner: Alnawar, Connor Beasley (jockey), Helal Al Alawi (trainer)

5.30pm: Maiden (PA) Dh80,000 1,400m

Winner: Raniah, Noel Garbutt, Ernst Oertel

6pm: Handicap (PA) Dh90,000 2,200m

Winner: Saarookh, Richard Mullen, Ana Mendez

6.30pm: Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Jewel Crown (PA) Rated Conditions Dh125,000 1,600m

Winner: RB Torch, Tadhg O’Shea, Eric Lemartinel

7pm: Al Wathba Stallions Cup Handicap Dh70,000 1,600m

Winner: MH Wari, Antonio Fresu, Elise Jeane

7.30pm: Handicap Dh90,000 1,600m

Winner: Mailshot, Royston Ffrench, Salem bin Ghadayer

 

RESULT

Norway 1 Spain 1
Norway: King (90+4')
Spain: Niguez (47')

The specs

Engine: 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 620hp from 5,750-7,500rpm
Torque: 760Nm from 3,000-5,750rpm
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
On sale: Now
Price: From Dh1.05 million ($286,000)

BACK TO ALEXANDRIA

Director: Tamer Ruggli

Starring: Nadine Labaki, Fanny Ardant

Rating: 3.5/5

Honeymoonish

Director: Elie El Samaan

Starring: Nour Al Ghandour, Mahmoud Boushahri

Rating: 3/5

Formula 4 Italian Championship 2023 calendar

April 21-23: Imola
May 5-7: Misano
May 26-28: SPA-Francorchamps
June 23-25: Monza
July 21-23: Paul Ricard
Sept 29-Oct 1: Mugello
Oct 13-15: Vallelunga

UAE v Gibraltar

What: International friendly

When: 7pm kick off

Where: Rugby Park, Dubai Sports City

Admission: Free

Online: The match will be broadcast live on Dubai Exiles’ Facebook page

UAE squad: Lucas Waddington (Dubai Exiles), Gio Fourie (Exiles), Craig Nutt (Abu Dhabi Harlequins), Phil Brady (Harlequins), Daniel Perry (Dubai Hurricanes), Esekaia Dranibota (Harlequins), Matt Mills (Exiles), Jaen Botes (Exiles), Kristian Stinson (Exiles), Murray Reason (Abu Dhabi Saracens), Dave Knight (Hurricanes), Ross Samson (Jebel Ali Dragons), DuRandt Gerber (Exiles), Saki Naisau (Dragons), Andrew Powell (Hurricanes), Emosi Vacanau (Harlequins), Niko Volavola (Dragons), Matt Richards (Dragons), Luke Stevenson (Harlequins), Josh Ives (Dubai Sports City Eagles), Sean Stevens (Saracens), Thinus Steyn (Exiles)

UAE SQUAD

Omar Abdulrahman (Al Hilal), Ali Khaseif, Ali Mabkhout, Salem Rashed, Khalifa Al Hammadi, Khalfan Mubarak, Zayed Al Ameri, Mohammed Al Attas (Al Jazira), Khalid Essa, Ahmed Barman, Ryan Yaslam, Bandar Al Ahbabi (Al Ain), Habib Fardan, Tariq Ahmed, Mohammed Al Akbari (Al Nasr), Ali Saleh, Ali Salmin (Al Wasl), Adel Al Hosani, Ali Hassan Saleh, Majed Suroor (Sharjah), Ahmed Khalil, Walid Abbas, Majed Hassan, Ismail Al Hammadi (Shabab Al Ahli), Hassan Al Muharrami, Fahad Al Dhahani (Bani Yas), Mohammed Al Shaker (Ajman)

Fitness problems in men's tennis

Andy Murray - hip

Novak Djokovic - elbow

Roger Federer - back

Stan Wawrinka - knee

Kei Nishikori - wrist

Marin Cilic - adductor

If you go

The flights
Emirates (www.emirates.com) and Etihad (www.etihad.com) both fly direct to Bengaluru, with return fares from Dh 1240. From Bengaluru airport, Coorg is a five-hour drive by car.

The hotels
The Tamara (www.thetamara.com) is located inside a working coffee plantation and offers individual villas with sprawling views of the hills (tariff from Dh1,300, including taxes and breakfast).

When to go
Coorg is an all-year destination, with the peak season for travel extending from the cooler months between October and March.

Rocketman

Director: Dexter Fletcher

Starring: Taron Egerton, Richard Madden, Jamie Bell

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars 

Getting there

Etihad Airways flies daily to the Maldives from Abu Dhabi. The journey takes four hours and return fares start from Dh3,995. Opt for the 3am flight and you’ll land at 6am, giving you the entire day to adjust to island time.  

Round trip speedboat transfers to the resort are bookable via Anantara and cost $265 per person.  

Mercer, the investment consulting arm of US services company Marsh & McLennan, expects its wealth division to at least double its assets under management (AUM) in the Middle East as wealth in the region continues to grow despite economic headwinds, a company official said.

Mercer Wealth, which globally has $160 billion in AUM, plans to boost its AUM in the region to $2-$3bn in the next 2-3 years from the present $1bn, said Yasir AbuShaban, a Dubai-based principal with Mercer Wealth.

Within the next two to three years, we are looking at reaching $2 to $3 billion as a conservative estimate and we do see an opportunity to do so,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Mercer does not directly make investments, but allocates clients’ money they have discretion to, to professional asset managers. They also provide advice to clients.

“We have buying power. We can negotiate on their (client’s) behalf with asset managers to provide them lower fees than they otherwise would have to get on their own,” he added.

Mercer Wealth’s clients include sovereign wealth funds, family offices, and insurance companies among others.

From its office in Dubai, Mercer also looks after Africa, India and Turkey, where they also see opportunity for growth.

Wealth creation in Middle East and Africa (MEA) grew 8.5 per cent to $8.1 trillion last year from $7.5tn in 2015, higher than last year’s global average of 6 per cent and the second-highest growth in a region after Asia-Pacific which grew 9.9 per cent, according to consultancy Boston Consulting Group (BCG). In the region, where wealth grew just 1.9 per cent in 2015 compared with 2014, a pickup in oil prices has helped in wealth generation.

BCG is forecasting MEA wealth will rise to $12tn by 2021, growing at an annual average of 8 per cent.

Drivers of wealth generation in the region will be split evenly between new wealth creation and growth of performance of existing assets, according to BCG.

Another general trend in the region is clients’ looking for a comprehensive approach to investing, according to Mr AbuShaban.

“Institutional investors or some of the families are seeing a slowdown in the available capital they have to invest and in that sense they are looking at optimizing the way they manage their portfolios and making sure they are not investing haphazardly and different parts of their investment are working together,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Some clients also have a higher appetite for risk, given the low interest-rate environment that does not provide enough yield for some institutional investors. These clients are keen to invest in illiquid assets, such as private equity and infrastructure.

“What we have seen is a desire for higher returns in what has been a low-return environment specifically in various fixed income or bonds,” he said.

“In this environment, we have seen a de facto increase in the risk that clients are taking in things like illiquid investments, private equity investments, infrastructure and private debt, those kind of investments were higher illiquidity results in incrementally higher returns.”

The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, one of the largest sovereign wealth funds, said in its 2016 report that has gradually increased its exposure in direct private equity and private credit transactions, mainly in Asian markets and especially in China and India. The authority’s private equity department focused on structured equities owing to “their defensive characteristics.”

The story in numbers

18

This is how many recognised sects Lebanon is home to, along with about four million citizens

450,000

More than this many Palestinian refugees are registered with UNRWA in Lebanon, with about 45 per cent of them living in the country’s 12 refugee camps

1.5 million

There are just under 1 million Syrian refugees registered with the UN, although the government puts the figure upwards of 1.5m

73

The percentage of stateless people in Lebanon, who are not of Palestinian origin, born to a Lebanese mother, according to a 2012-2013 study by human rights organisation Frontiers Ruwad Association

18,000

The number of marriages recorded between Lebanese women and foreigners between the years 1995 and 2008, according to a 2009 study backed by the UN Development Programme

77,400

The number of people believed to be affected by the current nationality law, according to the 2009 UN study

4,926

This is how many Lebanese-Palestinian households there were in Lebanon in 2016, according to a census by the Lebanese-Palestinian dialogue committee

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Lamsa

Founder: Badr Ward

Launched: 2014

Employees: 60

Based: Abu Dhabi

Sector: EdTech

Funding to date: $15 million

The specs

Engine: 3.5-litre twin-turbo V6

Power: 380hp at 5,800rpm

Torque: 530Nm at 1,300-4,500rpm

Transmission: Eight-speed auto

Price: From Dh299,000 ($81,415)

On sale: Now