But just because hip-hop and Hollywood have gotten closer doesn't mean that rappers don't like to kick back and enjoy their films, too. With the height of the summer blockbuster season fully upon us, XXL asked 22 rappers to name their favorite movie of all time. And get this—only one said Scarface. The world is yours. —XXL Staff
Ab-SoulEnter The Void, hands down. Great movie. It’s like shot in all first person. It's amazing.
B.o.BProbably The Matrix. Everybody shits on the last two Matrix movies, but them shits was dope. Because it really told the story deeper. It wasn’t like the dumbed down version of what it was. It’s like that old saying, when a rock band comes out, and they drop two other albums? It’s like, “I like their first album better.” The shit is still dope.
Boldy JamesIf I'm watching TV, it ain't always gotta be gangsta flicks and shit, 'cause that's my real life. I kinda like to laugh—'cause I don't watch TV often—so when I do sit still for long enough to watch TV, I would pop on a movie like The Royal Tenenbaums. I love The Royal Tenenbaums. That movie was silly as fuck, man. Like I said, I like to smoke weed and have a good laugh every blue moon, 'cause my life's so serious that I don't get the time. I'm from Detroit, man, and if you know Detroit, it's hard to make it to 15, 16 years old, man, in my neighborhood. So for me to be doing all this shit it's like a triple blessing that I've never seen coming, and I'm trying to figure out what I did in my life to deserve all this, man. I played my role with the good deeds and all that, but this shit is real around here.
I didn't grow up playing video games, watching TV and all that shit, I dropped out of school damn near 8th grade, 9th grade. So everything I know is totally off my experiences and my street life, nothing more, nothing less. All my uncles was gangsters, so I got a whole different perception of reality than a lot of people. I lost all my friends growing up to all the street life—drug dealing and chasing petty money and stuff—so this don't mean as much to me as it would mean to a younger guy who probably hasn't been through half the shit I've been through. I'm 30 years old, a father, I think different than the average youngin' out here whose just doing something to appease somebody else as opposed to him doing a song because that's who he is and he has no other choice, because that's who he is.
So that's what I'm tellin' you, homie. I didn't get to watch TV too much, and when I do it's me kickin' it with Chuck [Inglish] and Mikey [Rocks], just chillin' and smokin' weed, watchin' them big ass flat screens hangin' up in their home. I don't get to do that much, man.
Chevy WoodsI think this movie just became my favorite movie, and that’s Lone Survivor with Mark Walberg. It just tells a story that you were seeing on CNN and all of that stuff. It’s a good movie to be able to watch and understand what happened.
ChinxMy favorite movie is Scarface. My second favorite movie is Last Dragon. It’s an old movie with a black kid. They almost portraying him as Bruce Lee. It’s a martial arts joint.
Fred The GodsonBoomerang. Eddie Murphy is sick as hell in that joint. Funny at the same time with Martin. [David] Alan Grier dude. Robin Givens. Halle Berry. Shit was dope. All the way.
G-EazyPulp Fiction. Tarantino's probably my favorite. It's either that or Inglorious Basterds. But Pulp Fiction's just so fucking iconic. I can never watch it the whole way through. It gets really fuckin' noir at the end. That's his best work. It's Tarantino at his absolute best; the style, the tone, the cinematography.
Joey Bada$$My favorite movie is City Of God. Because the main character, I just see a lot of similarities with him; I can relate to him so much. Because I've always been that kid in the middle of it all, observing, but knowing that I wanted to be something greater than what everybody was coming to around me. He was with his camera as I was to my pen and pad.
K CampBoyz N The Hood. It’s just gangsta. OG shit. Classic shit.
Kid InkI think the scariest horror movie would have to be The Conjuring. That's the scariest movie I've ever seen. I'd have to think about a favorite movie, but that's definitely the scariest movie I've ever seen.
LogicVanilla Sky. It’s amazing. I love it because it fucks with the mind. It deals with dreams and what’s reality and what’s not, finding yourself, and makes you think about what’s important. Here you have this multi-millionaire—who knows, he could have been a billionaire, I don’t know. He’s the protagonist of the movie. I actually have a song on the album produced by DJ Dahi that kind of talks about this. He had all the money in the world and it wasn’t enough for him. The one thing that made him happy was this woman. That’s it. Just another human being that was really great that just made him happy. I think it really opened my eyes about what makes you happy.
Like, I look around, I see my friends who are my family. Fuck music, fuck all this shit. This shit is whatever. We just do this shit to make money. You know what I mean? I just do this shit to get my story out and kind of maybe hopefully help somebody else. At the end of the day, it’s not the music friendship, it's the music business. That’s why we do it. It is just is what it is. And we love it. If I had to rap and be famous and make millions and millions of dollars or be broke and be able to be friends with my homies, I would choose that any day. That’s what I took from that movie. That’s why I like it so much.
Mac MillerIt's so hard to describe, because it's not always the fact that it's a good movie—and this is an amazing movie—but How High. At the end of the day, How High shaped me as a human being when I was a kid. When I was young, we used to watch How High every day. Before I started working my ass off every day, we literally watched, from the ages of like 12 to fuckin' 17, smokin' weed every single day with the VHS of How High that we would just play and rewind, play and rewind. But there's a million: KIDS was a big one for me, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, Almost Famous. [Ed. Note: Also The Lion King]
Meek MillI like movies from the culture that we live, like Paid In Full, Belly, Shottas. What else? City Of God. Stuff like that.
MursJuice. My son’s name is Bishop. He’s actually named after the X-Men, but I got the 'Pac reference in on my wife, [who] is a comic book fan. Juice, without a doubt.
Nipsey Hu$$leBelly, Godfather 2... Scarface is dope, but it's not my favorite movie. I'll say Belly is my favorite urban film, Godfather 2 is my favorite movie in history. Belly was like a hustler's ambition, where those young kids who saw it were like, yeah, if my house don't look like that, if my car don't look like that, and my clothes ain't like that, and my jewelry and my bowl of weed ain't on the table in the living room like that, I didn't live up to my goal. [Laughs] And I know Belly's storyline was pretty wack, but just the whole visuals was real dope to me. That shit was like art. Like if you played that on a flat screen TV in a big house, that looks like art.
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PapooseI'm going Menace II Society, man. I could relate to it, man. Even though it wasn't an East Coast movie, I don't think the East Coast ever had a movie that really captured how it was out here, and I think the Hughes Brothers—I think that's their name—I think they did a good job at that. I'm not even from L.A., but I can tell that they really captured how it really is. And I can relate to it, though, 'cause there's a hood everywhere, and just growing up in Brooklyn, man, that movie took me to a certain time in my life, and I can relate to everything that happened in that movie.
And then at the end, it had a message to it—all this bullshit that they did in the hood growin' up, all this foul shit, it caught up with them in the end. So it was a reality check for everybody who wanted to be a gangster and live that life. That movie was a reality check, like, yo, it's cool if you wanna be like that, it's cool for a time, but just know that the end result is either jail or death. But I loved New Jack City and Malcolm X, but Menacy II Society is dope as fuck.
ProdigyOne of my favorite movies is probably Taxi Driver with Robert Deniro. It’s just grimy and real gritty how it was shot, the film it was shot on. And it’s New York in the '70s, when New York was real dirty and grimy. It captured that in the movie.
Rich Homie QuanMy favorite movie would have to be Titanic, only because I was so into it when I was little.
Tragedy KhadafiOne of my favorite movies is Cape Fear. And why? Because this dude, he thought he was so right and shit. He was so fucking horribly wrong. He thought he was so fucking righteous. He actually believed he was doing God’s cause by doing the shit he was doing. That shit just cracked me up though. That was one of my favorite movies.
TwistaMy favorite movie is probably one of The Matrix movies or The Underworld. I’m a horror movie fan.
Vince StaplesI like Back To The Future. That shit is like crackin’. We used to go Universal Studios when I was a little kid and they had the ride and we had the movie. So it was full circle with it.
Young DroYou're going to laugh at this. Legends Of The Fall with Brad Pitt. When you see that movie though, you're not gonna beg to differ. Great movie. What I like about it, Brad Pitt was a kind of back in the day white thug. You know what I mean? ‘Cause the man sold bands and shit. He went out to the wild and came back home with bear teeth. Indians raised him. He went over here and he did this with these people. He was a hunter. It was just like, I saw me being him in that movie. It was deep for me. It caught my attention as a young Black King. I had to sit down and watch that movie. It was fun.
Previously: 19 Rappers’ Favorite Songs From A Member Of Their Generation
23 Rappers And Producers On The Music That Changed Their Lives
12 Rappers And Producers On The Best Advice They Ever Received
15 Rappers On Their Most Embarrassing Public Moments
11 Rappers On The Highest Point Of Their Careers
11 Rappers On The Lowest Moments Of Their Careers
Mac Miller's Favorite Movie Is The Lion King