Friday, November 9, 2012


In 1984 at Simeon Career Academy, a high school on the South Side of Chicago, Ben Wilson was a rising basketball star. Having just led his team to a state title as a junior, Ben was invited to premier scouting camps and even  topped a highly regarded national ranking of prospects. This was all shattered in an instance though, when a meaningless argument with a random stranger outside of school led to Wilson's senseless killing. "Benji" is a touching tribute by family and friends (which include, perhaps distractingly, hip-hop artists R. Kelly and Common) lamenting their lost friend and his unfulfilled dream, which also comments on the urban violence which continues to this day to plague the Windy City. Directors Coodie and Chike tell a deeply felt, multifaceted, and cohesive story, which is more than can be said about many of the films in this series, especially as of late.