King of the Dancehall gets thumbs up at fest 

King of the Dancehall, a film by American actor Nick Cannon, has earned good reviews at the Toronto International Film Festival, which ends on Sunday.

The film, shot in parts in Jamaica and stars Cannon, sees him performing multiple roles as screenwriter, director and executive producer.

According to the article posted on Yahoo, Cannon is praised for two good decisions which saved the film, as the reviewer said he could have easily found himself over his head and coming off with a bad product.

“As an amateur, Cannon quickly ends up way over his head, unable to wrangle a film that careens off in a dozen directions at once. Yet the director makes two smart decisions that help turn what could have easily been an unwatchable mess into a hysterical, feverish, incredibly watchable one,” the article read.

The first is his choice to shoot the film on location in Jamaica, deep in the country’s dancehall scene. Though the music itself is not entirely mainstream in the US, Stateside audiences will surely recognise some of the countless dancehall beats and dance moves that American pop stars have been ripping off for years,” the reviewer wrote.

The second wise move praised his the decision to cast Jamaican first-time actress Kimberly Patterson, who was previously employed as a make-up artist on film shoots, as his romantic lead.

Patterson is described as “traffic-haltingly beautiful” and graced with talent to boot.

King of the Dancehall follows the experiences of a New Yorker, played by Cannon, who visits his family in Jamaica and falls in love with the music and culture of the island. Jamaican dancehall personalities Beenie Man and quartet TOK make appearances, along with Jamaican-Canadian singer Kreesha Turner and Ky-Mani Marley. Local actor Carl Bradshaw, who has the distinction of appearing in almost every major film shot in Jamaica for the past four decades, also forms part of the cast of King of the Dancehall.

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