Behind closed doors, Ashanti says to her boyfriend (Larenz Tate) that “I don’t understand what’s wrong.” He snips that he “can’t talk to her” and claims she’s “running around and too busy” for him. She tells she’s pursuing her dream of singing. He shouts “what about me? what about me….you don’t listen to nothing I say.” He demands for to “stop talking when I’m talking” In a sharp voice, she says she’s listening to him. He yells at to “stop loud talking.”
Two drops of rain fall into a puddle. As the rain pours, a car turns on its headlights. Ashanti, wearing sunglasses, sits in the back of the car.
In the bathroom mirror, she touches the bruise underneath her eye. She and her boyfriend receive their food at the drive-thru window. He stares at the cup featuring her image on it. She smashes the mirror. During a fight, he holds onto her arms. He leaps over the couch and she runs into the bathroom. She locks the door and shouts at him to leave her alone. He jiggles the knob and then kicks at the door with his foot. He opens and slams the door.
On the couch, he touches some of her hair as he sits down next to her. They sleep together by the window. He gets up from the bed and looks into the mirror and she stares off while she rests her head on the pillow.
The cameras flash on the red carpet. She and her boyfriend hold hands. He stands in the background while she talks to the press. She smiles at people behind the velvet ropes. As she walks up to the red carpet, he lets go of her hand. He returns home and smokes and then drives to his dealer’s house. Parking on the curb, he and his dealer exchange the drugs. A police siren goes off and they scatter in the neighborhood. He drives into the city and leans against the car, smoking as he looks at the billboard of Ashanti on a building.
Back home, he sleeps with another woman. Ashanti walks up the stairs and pauses once she opens the door. The other woman leaves the bed. He stares at Ashanti, cigar in his mouth. She turns and leaves. He follows her into the family and grabs her arm. She shoves him. He points his phone at her and watches her as she walks out the door.
She looks out the window as the driver takes her to assistant’s home.
Ashanti talks with the director of the shelter for domestic violence. The director said the women would love to have her speak and adds that since her interview, women have been calling the hotline and asking for help. Ashanti tells her it took almost four years to get out. The director tells her it took her courage to speak up.
At the shelter, she takes notes during training. While on break, a young woman introduces herself and says her boyfriend almost killed her. Ashanti told her she was scared every day it was going to happen to her. The young woman smiles and says she’s glad here. The young woman asks her about training. She says it’s intense as she stirs her coffee but she wants to give back.
The record executives says none of the songs are marketable and that it’s too depressing. She says it discusses what she went through and it may help people. The executive tells her to save it for the interviews. Her fans want to know she’s doing well. She takes back her tape and says they are the problem. She says the first single about leaving is a top 10 hit. The executives tell her to go back into the studio. While walking out of the office, she calls her manager on the phone and asks if she can break her contract.
Director: Hype Williams Year: 2003