King of the Streets isn’t about the glitz. Despite featuring appearances by powerful hip-hop record labels like Bad Boy, Roc-A-Fella, Def Jam and Ruff Ryders, the DVD takes viewers into the life of a street team employee (or urban marketer), who has one goal–making sure the public knows about a hip-hop artist. Street teams do this in a variety of ways, including putting up fliers or posters–it’s called sniping–on every pole or popular hang-out possible; promoting albums by yelling out the artist’s name using a microphone; passing out postcards, cassettes and T-shirts, and even setting up balloons on beaches.

The 63-minute documentary, set primarily in New York, features June Balloon and Stan Da Butcher; Bad Boy head street team members; General, the C.E.O. of marketing and promotion from Ruff Ryders; Gavin and Darryl, national directors of street promotion for Roc-A-Fella Records, as well as the street teams employed by each label.

Sounds glamorous right? But there’s a darker element to the street team. Employees are required to sacrifice their sleeping, eating and social habits for their record label. Street team members are shown driving eighteen hours straight from New York to Palm Beach, Florida, getting arrested by police when trying to put up artist product and watching out for other street teams who try to tear down their product.

"To the street teams, if they take it personal, we’re sorry," says New York City Department of Transportation assistant commissioner Tom Cocola, who cites public safety and defacing property as to why street members are arrested.

But the street teams argue their product is no worse than billboards being put up by major corporations. They say politicians campaign workers are never arrested for putting up fliers, stickers or handing out postcards.

"It’s a double standard," says Ali Muhammad, "Vibe" magazine marketing director. "You can’t put a poster on Trump Plaza. But you can go to Marcy (the Brooklyn projects where Jay-Z is from) and snipe it all day."

Muhammad’s right. But the tension makes for a great DVD.

Movie Grade: A

DVD Grade: A