Entertainment » Movies

Patti Cake$

by Derek Deskins
EDGE Media Network Contributor
Tuesday Nov 21, 2017
Patti Cake$

In this internet era of movies, it's hard to go into a film with no expectations. We are buried in trailers and plied with so many interviews and behind-the-scenes looks, that if you aren't careful, you can see most movies before they even hit your local multiplex. It's certainly not ideal, but it doesn't necessarily have to ruin the filmgoing experience. In the case of "Patti Cake$," it is exactly the movie that you think it is, but done so delightfully that you don't mind.

On the surface, Patricia Dombrowski is leading a meager life. In her early twenties with no more education than her high school diploma implies, she tends bar at a local North Jersey watering hole, with nearly every dime she makes going to pay for her mother's drinking habit or her grandmother's medical expenses. But inside, there is no Patricia, only Killa P, a.k.a. Patti Cake$, a rap queen.

"Patti Cake$" isn't about to surprise you with any convoluted twists or emotional gut-punches that you're not already expecting. This is exactly the move that you think it is. Normally, I would find some fault with that, and sure, it can be eminently more difficult to set yourself apart from the legions of other films in the market when audiences can tell how your story is going to play out. But there is something comforting in the familiarity of "Patti Cake$" that makes its often paint-by-numbers approach endearing.

Part of the reason why I can forgive the rudimentary structure of "Patti Cake$" is its unbridled devotion to its central characters. Australian actress Danielle Macdonald is positively radiant in the film's title role, amazing in her ability to embody both Patricia Dombrowski and Killa P, which is no small feat. She is supported by the more comedic, and equally strong, Siddharth Dhananjay. Even Bridget Everett, who is shackled to a poorly-written character, turns in a performance that is far more nuanced and complicated than it has any right to be.

The Blu-ray release of "Patti Cake$" comes with more gifts than an absent parent attempting to buy his kid's love. It is a three-format release (Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital) that isn't content to just give its audience great sound and picture quality. This release is positively overflowing with special features, with a director's commentary, a whole squad of behind-the-scenes looks, and a couple of music videos. The quality of the behind-the-scenes features, which is often suspect on these releases, is fantastic. They play like short documentaries, rather than the promotional YouTube videos that often plague these releases.

"Patti Cake$" is a thoroughly enjoyable and wholly predictable film. It is funny, sad, and heart-warming, and this Blu-ray release shows you all of the little places from which it was able to draw its strength. The love put into "Patti Cake$" is all over this Blu-ray release, allowing it to achieve the ultimate rarity when it comes to media releases: elevating the film itself.

"Patti Cake$"
Blu-ray Combo Pack


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