They Cloned Tyrone review: John Boyega is ubiquitous

Jamie Foxx, Teyonah Parris, and John Boyega in They Cloned Tyrone

They Cloned Tyrone starts with the stereotypical urban character set and turns into an unexpected sci-fi mystery. By the end you’re struck by the social commentary on the evils of white supremacy. Spoilers ahead, you’ve been warned.

Let’s meet the “stereotypes” in They Cloned Tyrone.

Jamie Foxx, Teyonah Parris, and John Boyega in They Cloned Tyrone

Yo-Yo (Teyonah Parris, marvelous as always) is a prostitute. Slick Charles (Jamie Foxx) is a pimp. Fontaine (John Boyega) sells drugs. Like Tatiana Maslany in Orphan Black, John Boyega really gets to show his acting chops in this one because there are John Boyegas everywhere.

In the course of living out their stereotypical lives in the hood, something strange happens. Fontaine gets filled full of bullets and dies. But the next day he’s back again, good as new.

The three team up to figure out what happened. Yo-Yo turns out to be really smart. (Aren’t Black women always the smartest people in the room?) Slick Charles is a bit of a coward, but Fontaine is the hero brave enough to go after the answers.

They discover a huge underground laboratory full of white people who are busy cloning the Black population of the hood. The clones do the bidding, slave-like, of their white masters. The evil leader of this underground people manufacturing facility is Nixon (Kiefer Sutherland).

Fontaine, Yo-Yo and Slick Charles slowly realize the extent of the problem and the implications of what the clones will do. Like the dolls in Dollhouse, the clones can be programmed in any way their creators want.

The three do their action packed best to expose and solve the problem.

I loved the ending with its Erykah Badu accompaniment. Years ago I went to a Lilith Fair concert and the biggest take away I have from that night is Erykah Badu singing “Tyrone.” The lyrics were changed slightly for the film.

I also loved some of the humor. Yo-Yo was a huge Nancy Drew fan and had all the books. There was a reference to Captain America but not Wanda Vision, which would have been funnier.

I wouldn’t call this film great art, especially with its rather heavy handed social message. But it was good art, enjoyable art, and a great watch. I recommend it. Look for it on Netflix.

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