Some of hip-hop's most enduring clichés are the ones that are truest—as an honest form of expression, it crosses cultural (and often language) barriers; and by offering a way to challenge the consequences of structural inequality, it saves lives. Those two threads are the crux of Bombay 70, a sweet short film that tells the story of an Indian rapper named Naezy. As the tale goes, Naezy was once a petty criminal, who was destined, in his words, for more trouble ahead, but a spontaneous recess performance of Sean Paul's "Temperature" transformed his life. Today, he raps in Urdu to campaign for improvements in broadband infrastructure and the adoption of internet as a universal right, among other social issues relevant to the residents of his neighborhood, Mumbai 70, where he's become a local celebrity.
Watch the short doc above for a humanizing look into how hip-hop has spread across the globe, and how it often finds itself face-to-face with the community-steeped principles of its origins decades ago.