The biggest takeaway from SVDDXNLY, the new A$AP Rocky documentary that had its world premiere at SXSW last night? Rocky and the rest of A$AP Mob are funny. Like, really funny. If the rap game were to fold, they should consider starring in their own docu-styled TV show. A$AP Jackass, perhaps. They're already thinking like Johnny Knoxville and his fellow well-paid knuckleheads—a running gag throughout SVDDXNLY shows Mob members A$AP Yams and A$AP Twelvy sneaking up on sleeping and/or passed out buddies and blowing air-horns into their ears.
Running a lean, classroom-video-appropriate 57 minutes, SVDDXNLY is easy, breezy documentation. VICE Media's David Laven traveled with Rocky's entourage from the early days of his "Purple Swag" come-up all the way into the release of his 2013 debut album, Long. Live. ASAP. Along with candid interviews with Flacko himself, SVDDXNLY includes appearances from Macklemore, Danny Brown, Snoop Dogg, and Rihanna, all of whom share their thoughts on what makes Rocky such a unique rap headliner.
In Rocky's world, as Laven's film displays, fashion is a religion and making music a way of life—but you probably know that already. Thankfully, Rocky's sense of humor gives the doc some much-needed pep.
These are SVDDXNLY's funniest moments:
Since his mother named him Rakim because she's such a big hip-hop head, you'd think that A$AP Rocky would've spent his early childhood playing with a toy microphone and Fisher Price rhyme book. As a youngster, though, Rocky had a different career path in mind. "When I was five years old," he says in SVDDXNLY, "I wanted to be an ice cream truck man. The smirk on his face implies that he, too, realizes that's far from being a world-famous rapper who bathes in champagne in his music videos.
Those Creamsicle and Fat Frog goals were quickly dashed. "My dad told me that ice cream truck drivers are bums in reality." Middle-aged men selling frozen Shark pops to obnoxious little kids, of course, won't find that very funny. Rocky, though, definitely does.
Nursery School Stunna
Director David Laven scored tons of childhood pictures of Rakim Mayers, years before he'd turn into Pretty Lord Flacko. In all of the photos he's straight cheesing, posing like he's practicing for future Complex covers. The best of the snapshots shows Rocky as a five-year-old, sporting a fresh-to-death red cross-color jacket, a gold chain that's way too large and chunky for any rugrat, and a nice pair of stunner shades. "I've always been a pretty motherfucker," says Rocky. Of course.
A$AP John Lithgow
SVDDXNLY turns nearly all of Rocky's A$AP Mob associates into scene-stealing comedians. One of the film's MVPs is A$AP Lou, Rocky's personal assistant and the crew's token white guy. "He's the blackest white boy I've ever known," says his boss/friend.
There's a nice moment where Rocky, Lou, and A$AP Twelvy are walking through the backstage hallway of an arena, and Lou's slightly grizzly look—he has long hair and unkempt scruff on his face—inspires the rest of them to crack wise. Rocky wins the diss-a-thon with, "You look like you should be in that movie Harry and the Hendersons."
David Laven knew exactly what he was doing with the juxtaposition here. In one of SVDDXLNY's family-driven moments, one of Rocky's older realtives chats about the superstar's upbringing. "We brought him up to be humble," he says, "and he's always been humble." Cut to a shot of Rocky playing with two pre-teen relatives. "You know what they're gonna be doing when they get older, right? Fuckin' all these hoes! Just like me." It doesn't get any humbler than that.
Twelvy's Dating Advice
Having trouble scoring with the ladies, fellas? Rocky's righthand man Twelvy, whom he calls the "Pippen" to his "Jordan," is here to help. SVDDXNLY includes a bunch of non sequiturs where Rocky and his buddies are talking shit to one another or just simply shooting the shit. Their conversations, unsurprisingly, often center on the opposite sex, a topic that Mr. Twelvy has an especially ratchet opinion about. His tip for successfully meeting girls who'll give it up: "If a bitch is wearing jean shorts, you know they fuckin'."
Dirty Talk with a Ginger
For no truly necessary reason other than comedy, SVDDXNLY features a bizarre midway sidestep from A$AP Rocky's career and personal life. It begins with a clip from the VICE series Back & Forth, with Rocky and Danny Brown talking about having sex with older woman. "I'd fuck Cher," Rocky says repeatedly, prompting Brown to express how much he'd love to hook up with Kathy Griffin. Rocky keeps asking, "Who's Kathy Griffin?" Cut to an exterior shot of Griffin's L.A. home, where Rocky and the red-headed comedienne are sitting on her plush white couch and getting kinky. A sampling:
Griffin: "I will fuck your dick sore and make you leave crying."
Rocky: "You're gonna have to call the cops. I will kill that pussy."
A brief intermission for mutual laughter, and then:
Griffin: "I will bring my pussy back to life, fuck your dick, and kill it."
Trust, it's even more surreal to watch on a big screen.
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