There has been a lot of talk around Spike Lee’s upcoming movie Chi-Raq. There are some who are fans of Lee and are looking forward to seeing someone tackle the rampant violence surging through the streets of Chicago. On the other hand, there are many who feel (based off of trailers) that Spike has missed the mark. Naysayers feel as though the legendary director has not delved deep enough into the real issues that feed the violent nature of Chicago shooters. Nevertheless, everybody will get the chance to see what Lee made on Friday, December 4, in theaters across the nation. There’s one thing. Some are regarding Chi-Raq as though it’s groundbreaking, since Spike is adapting the Greek comedy Lysistrata to the hood. However, we’ve been here before.
If you aren’t hip, Lysistrata is a play by Aristophanes in which the woman for whom the play is named persuades Greek women to withhold sex from men as a means of stopping the Peloponnesian War. While Lee had a deal with Amazon and enlisted stars like Nick Cannon, Angela Bassett, Samuel L.Jackson and Dave Chappelle to tell the gangster version of Lysistrata, it was done before in 2003. The movie is called A Miami Tail which features notable female rapper Trina (in her acting debut as “Alicia Strata”), comedienne Sommore and emcee Mr. Cheeks. An anonymous synopsis on IMDB reads:
“A Miami Tail” is a contemporary version of Lysistrata, a classic Greek comedy by Aristophanes. “A Miami Tail” has Alicia (Trina) leading the women of Liberty City in a protest against gang violence and disrespect of women in their neighborhood by refusing sex to their gangbanging boyfriends.
A Miami Tail was never in theaters (straight to DVD), and is does not appear to be crafted on the level comparable to Spike Lee’s prowess, but is it possible that Spike was aware of this film before writing Chi-Raq? We may never know that. But Trina and company did it first.
View A Miami Tail below: