13 years ago, Eminem was the star of 8 Mile, a film that was basically “The Eminem Story,” except Eminem (a.k.a. Marshall Mathers III) didn’t play himself in the movie. Instead, he portrayed Jimmy “B-Rabbit” Smith Jr., a Detroit-based white rapper whose life was incredibly similar to his own. And by “similar,” we mean “exactly.”
Eminem had the benefit of being surrounded by several veteran performers, including Kim Basinger as Jimmy’s mom; the late Brittany Murphy as Alex; Future Zod, Michael Shannon as Greg; and Mekhi Phifer as Jimmy’s friend and rap battle host, Future. More impressively, Eminem was at least good enough to hold his own opposite actors and actresses who had a lot more experience than he did. This is also the movie for which Eminem won an Oscar for Best Song, which means that “Lose Yourself” is inevitably destined to be reduced to a lyric-free medley at a future Academy Awards show.
8 Mile is the subject of the newest episode of Honest Trailers, which points out several of the movie’s absurdities, including the fact that Jimmy apparently only owns one piece of paper, and the way that the film presents Jimmy as the victim of racial adversity.
However, the HT team does give Eminem credit for a mostly understated performance. Although it is noted that his emotional range in 8 Mile has only two gears: every emotion or no emotion. The montage of clap-clap-hug-snaps is also very amusing.
Eminem fans, did the latest Honest Trailers offer up a fair look at 8 Mile? Respond in rhyme within the comment section below!