In his first starring role, Eminem projects the scurrilous, soft-eyed yearning of a hip-hop James Dean. Set in 1995, in some of the most bombed-out sections of Detroit, Curtis Hanson’s gritty and electrifying fable is built around bits and pieces of Eminem’s life and mythology, yet it has an unruly immediacy all its own. Eminem plays Jimmy ”Rabbit” Smith, a factory worker who crashes with his deadbeat mom (Kim Basinger) in a trailer park and competes in improvised rap duels. By the end, our desire to see him let out his rage is palpable, and the big rap contest is one of the most purely exciting scenes the movies have given us in years.

8 Mile
  • Movie
  • R
  • 111 minutes
  • Curtis Hanson