I came across this documentary about breakdancing because Nas was somehow involved with it and it caught my eye. It turns out that Nas executive produced the film, but I can see why someone like Nas would pay to get a film like this out there for people to see. Shake The Dust is an international documentary that highlights b-boys and b-girls from across the world. This film was so inspiring because it tells real stories of people in Colombia, Cambodia, Yemen and Uganda, but not in a light where they were victims. Hip hop started out in the park, but it was created by people that were focusing their attention, passion and creativity on creating a new culture. The same can be said for each person interviewed in this doc. All of the interviewees had a common thread where hip hop/breakdancing was their outlet that pointed them in the right direction. It's much more real than I was expecting because first it highlights how much hip hop means to these people who have very little. Then, it proceeds to tell the story of several unique and special human beings. Then, at the end, it focuses on how hip hop gave these b-boys and girls the confidence, how it has shaped their lives and what they've learned from it. The most poignant part of the film, in my opinion, is how mature, level headed and humble these amazing people were. They haven't become rich from dancing, but they know that they have been connected to something larger than themselves and you can see how grateful they are.
In the United States, it's so easy to lose sight of what's import because there are so many distractions. But the young people in this film give a good reality check and reminder of how lucky we all are. Every thing in our lives can be an opportunity to do something spectacular and every trauma is an opportunity to have an excuse to give up hope. One of the young men in the film quoted Ghandi and it's so appropriate to this point:
"You must be the change you wish to see in the world"
Now live it