Life in the hood is pretty bleak, but if you're Caine or O-Dog, it doesn't get much worse than this. The Hughes brothers' widely hailed (and often imitated) ode to life in South Central L.A. is morose and overflowing with violence -- to the point where you'll get blown away just for making a comment about someone's mother. Our hero Caine wants to get away from it all -- but his efforts don't amount for much. In the end, Menace isn't much more than a tragedy about street life -- but it never really makes a point. If this world is so bad, why glamorize it so much? To be sure, it's in an influential and powerful story -- but it comes off as considerably more shallow than the reality it claims to portray.