Home sweet home...
In theaters soon: Coach Carter, starring Samuel L. Jackson as Coach Carter, the high school basketball coach who benched his Richmond, California basketball team for poor academic performance.
Oh yeah, it should also be said that I grew up in El Sobrante, the town over, and went to high school in the same district as Richmond High. Hell, Mike actually lives in Richmond. ("In the good part," he adds. Yeah, whatever buddy.)
For those of you that haven't watched the trailer yet, I offer you this slightly exaggerated summary:
[Coolio's "Gangstas Paradise" is in the background. Well, not really, but it might as well be.]
ANNOUNCER: On the streets of Richmond, they fought to get by...
[Cue scenes of robbery, crack selling, someone killing their baby and eating it in the middle of the street]
ANNOUNCER:: ... and struggled to get out.
[Cut to riot breaking out in the school, running by a school building with bars in front of the windows. All the local folks know immediately this is a fictional movie, because everyone knows that it's Kennedy High School that has the bar on its windows, not Richmond.]
ANNOUNCER:: ... and if they had anything left, they brought it to the courts.
[Cut to a shot to someone from Richmond High's basketball team passing the ball to the token white boy. Strangely, the camera seems to cut to him for the duration of the trailer.]
BASKETBALL COACH OF ALL-WHITE RIVAL SCHOOL WEARING BLUE AND WHITE UNIFORMS: Your boys don't need practice - they need PRISON!
"Pinole Valley," Mike and I say simultaneously. (Well, not so much nowadays.)
ANNOUNCER:: Now they have a choice... between surviving alone... and standing together.
ASHANTI: Baby, we need to work hard to get out of this ghetto. This battlezone. This murder capital of the world, located 15-20 minutes north of Berkeley, California, to further clarify that we are not talking about Richmond, Virginia.
JA RULE: MUUUUUH-DUHH!
ASHANTI: The hell you doing here? The lot to "Scary Movie 3" is over there.
JA RULE: My bad.
[Cute to a positive TUPAC SHAKUR song, trailer credits roll]
You gotta love Hollywood interpretations. It's not the worse place in the world to live: bombs aren't falling, no one is being swept away. If you avoid the shady areas and the Chevron plant that leaks toxic gas every six to eight months, you're fine for the most part.