Damn.Nautri Naughton doesn’t really get a chance to go beyond "ghetto sex kitten" with her version of Lil’Kim. That blame I put squarely on the screenwriters. Naughton does a good job, but may have been directed to not portray much warmth. I think. Lil’Kim, at least in this movie, was portrayed as a bit of a cold-shouldered woman.I didn’t agree with Kim when she attacked the film for not portraying her accurately. Although I agree she was written as merely an opportunist and a slut who may have loved Biggie in the beginning, I disagree with her argument that she wasn’t given any control over how she was portrayed. And with her attacks on Nautri Naughton’s performance. The truth of the matter is that Lil’Kim could have told her own story. She chose not to and allowed George Tillman, Jr. and the screenwriters of Notorious (Reggie Rock Bythewood and Cheo Hodari Coker) to do it for her. If the real Kimberly Denise Jones made a point of putting her wealth, her fame and her talent to the creation of her own bio-film, it wouldn’t matter how other films portray her. She should rent The Beatles Anthology for an example of taking control of your own story.
If you are a fan of Notorious B.I.G., the rapper, this movie is definitely for you. If you are a fan of the real person however, this movie might be too shallow in that department for you to enjoy. George Tillman, Jr.’s exodus into making a film about Christopher Wallace the man doesn’t fail completely, it just moves too fast for you to care about anything else besides his fame as The Notorious B.I.G. Notorious deserved to be longer — much, much longer.
There are several DVD features included with this film.
- "The Making Of Notorious"
- "Biggie Boot Camp"
- "I've Got A Story To Tell: The Lyrics of Biggie Smalls Notorious Thugs: Casting the FilmAnatomy of a B.I.G PerformanceParty and Bulls**t"
- "The B.I.G Three-Sixty"
Most of these showcase the good vibes and hard work that went into making the film. The most surprising revelation for me in watching them was the insistence that Jamal Woolard go to a Biggie Boot Camp to learn how to speak, walk, and rap like Christopher Wallace. The same required of Derek Luke since he was protraying Puffy Combs and performing in some of the concert segments that mirror real concerts Biggie and Combs performed.
I don't really see the point of showing a view of the street where Christopher Wallace was shot ("The B.I.G Three-Sixty"). We all know how he was murdered, getting a 360-degree view seems unneccessary. The feature seems pointless since it doesn't shed any light on what could have been the motive for his killing.