Primarily due to fatherhood and a lack of viable sitters, I have yet to see the new Tupac Shakur biopic All Eyez On Me.

It’s been in theaters for all of 40 some odd hours or so in major cities, but this is 2017. Everyone who’s anyone has already seen it and formulated an opinion and wrote about it. Or they saw it, read all the opinions on it and formulated an opinion that is diametrically opposed to conventional wisdom (aka the backlash to the backlash). So yeah, I’m late to the gangsta party.

Observing social media’s reaction has been amusing. Reviews for All Eyez On Me have been mixed at best, trending towards negative. The most scathing of which may have been delivered by one of Pac’s closet friends, Jada Pinkett-Smith.

The creators of All Eyez On Me didn’t have to go to great lengths to track down Jada Pinkett Smith. She’s in the business. She’s not some distant older relative who might be unable to recount the exact details or nature of their relationship. She’s only 45 years old. Everyone who has ever followed Pac or his life and career were already well aware of the deep friendship the two of them possessed. So why then does it appear there was little to no consultation of Jada regarding this project (or at least a consultation on their relationship specifically)?

Perhaps the movie makers attempted to contact Pinkett-Smith and she declined any involvement. Maybe they reached out and she charged for her knowledge. We don’t know. Here’s what we do know: Biopics (or any film adaptation for that matter) are riddled with embellishments to enhance the overall story all the time, but if there was one person’s story that was entertaining as hell and didn’t require even a sliver of fiction, it’s Tupac Shakur. We also know the filmmakers should’ve anticipated a public outcry from Jada given her level of involvement in Pac’s shooting star of a life, and her depiction in the movie itself, along with her public stature. An outcry from Jada surely would grab headlines, which it has.

Maybe more details about the production of All Eyez On Me will trickle out over the coming days and weeks. As of now though, this all feels like either a gross miscalculation or rampant laziness on the part of those tasked with nailing the details of Shakur’s life.

TMZ obtained a rebuttal from L.T. Hutton, one of the film’s producers, who maintained the filmmakers delivered an accurate portrayal of the Jada & Pac’s relationship.

Other celebs like Snoop Dogg have also hit social media heavily to promote the movie. He even plugged it during Pac’s Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in April, which he posted yesterday with the caption “do your research.”

do your research and see #AllEyezOnMe out now 💯 happy birthday, pac rest easy . #tupacday

A post shared by snoopdogg (@snoopdogg) on

The movie appears to be legit from Uncle Snoop’s perspective. But accepting cosigns from some, but not all parties involved feels like an inconsiderate gesture towards the man himself. For if there was one thing bigger than Pac’s mouth, it was his heart. His loyal legions of fans were constructed on Makaveli’s unshakeable foundation of truth. Tupac was always true to himself, always living, speaking and rapping his truth. Always—for better or worse. Therefore, it stands to reason that historical accuracy wouldn’t have been an optional piece to have if Tupac were alive to see this, it would’ve been paramount. Furthermore, taking liberties with historical events under the guise of “creating the holy trinity” sounds like borderline irresponsible Hollywood speak.

Sidebar: But again, I haven’t seen it yet.

If creating an accurate biopic that possessed the perfect amount of cinematic output were easy, we’d certainty see a greater number of quality films. Producing a quality biopic that matches up historically while driving numbers at the box office can’t be easy, particularly when the subject has been deceased for over 20 years. Comparing this to N.W.A.’s Straight Outta Compton seems unfair as many of the principals involved from that story are still alive and had a direct hand in bringing the motion picture to life. But the success of Straight Outta Compton (along with Biggie’s movie, which dropped eight years earlier) necessitated Pac’s story being retold.

However it isn’t as if we haven’t seen Pac movies before. The 2003 documentary Tupac: Resurrection was so well done, it seemed as if Pac posthumously directed it himself. Of equal importance though was its accuracy— accuracy that was hard to misrepresent as it contained several memorable Pac interviews and self-narration.

All Eyez On Me may fail to live up to our expectations; we should be able to accept that. What we shouldn’t accept is a blatant lack of consideration for the lives and experiences of those who shared memories with Tupac Shakur. A halfway-accurate movie just isn’t good enough, especially for an artist who embodied honesty and unbridled emotion more than any other emcee we’ve ever seen. We saw it in his interviews. We saw it in his lyrics. We saw it in his films. We saw it in his activism. We saw it in every way he attacked life. There’s no reason we shouldn’t see it here, too.

I still plan on seeing All Eyez on Me, but a day after what would’ve been Tupac Shakur’s 46th birthday, the excitement for this picture has waned some knowing that Shakur himself likely would’ve rejected it.

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