HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Last Warrior, The
Artemis 81
Rampage
Quiet Place, A
Braven
Changeover, The
Isle of Dogs
Funny Cow
Maze Runner: The Death Cure
Mad to Be Normal
Beast of Burden
Dead Men Walk
Game Night
Under the Tree
L'Amant Double
Gonin
Coco
Producers, The
Molly's Game
Forest of the Lost Souls, The
Hatchet III
Birdman of Alcatraz
Pacific Rim: Uprising
Wonderstruck
If It Ain't Stiff, It Ain't Worth a Fuck
Nun, The
Red Sparrow
My Friend Dahmer
Journeyman
Heat, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Players of Games: Willy Wonka, Tron and Ready Player One
What Am I Doing Hangin' 'Round? The Ends of The Monkees
Flings and Arrows: Conquest vs Flesh + Blood
Orson Around: F for Fake and The Late Great Planet Earth
ITC What You Did There: Retro-Action on Blu-ray
And It Was the Dirtiest Harry We Have Seen in a Very Long Time: The Dirty Harry Series
Manor On Movies: The Astounding She Monster
Manor On Movies: Don't be a dolt. That's not a cult (movie)
Wes Anderson's Big Daddies: Steve Zissou and Others
Bad Taste from Outer Space: Galaxy of Terror and Xtro
A Yen for the 1990s: Iron Monkey and Satan Returns
Hey, Punk: Jubilee and Rock 'n' Roll High School
Help! with The Knack: Richard Lester in 1965
Roll Up, Get Yer Free Cinema: The Shorts on the BFI Woodfall Blu-rays
Time for Heroes: The Dam Busters and How I Won the War
   
 
  Willie Dynamite It's Hard Out Here For A PimpBuy this film here.
Year: 1974
Director: Gilbert Moses
Stars: Roscoe Orman, Diana Sands, Thalmus Rasulala, Joyce Walker, Roger Robinson, George Murdock, Albert Hall, Norma Donaldson, Juanita Brown, Royce Wallace, Judith Brown, Marilyn Coleman, Mary Charlotte Wilcox, Marcia McBroom, Jack Bernardi, Ted Gehring
Genre: Drama, Thriller
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Willie Dynamite (Roscoe Orman) is one of the most successful pimps in New York City because his stable of seven ladies of the night are about the best as it's possible to get in their profession, and therefore he can make a fortune off their backs. All he needs do is send them to a swanky hotel where a convention is being held and they clean up among the businessmen there, but he is having trouble with his new recruit, Pashen (Joyce Walker), who he does not believe is pulling her weight; she obviously needs more guidance, or more force. Today Willie has been invited to a meeting of the top pimps in the area, lead by Bell (Roger Robinson) who has a proposal for them: a union of pimps, with himself at the head of it.

But will Willie agree to an arrangement where he won't be his own man? He values his independence and - wait a second, is Willie actually Gordon from Sesame Street?! Indeed he was, as a short time after making this socially conscious blaxploitation flick he was to be ensconced in the bosom of the Children's Television Workshop as a nice guy some distance away from the nasty piece of work he played here. But take a closer look at the role and you would see what attracted him to it, as Sesame Street made its mission the education and improvement of America's, nay, the world's children, and there was a definite message in director Gilbert Moses' movie as well. Therefore all the trappings of the exploitation effort were present and correct, but there was more.

The actual conscience of the story was social worker Cora (Diana Sands who tragically was dead by the time this was released) who is endeavouring to sort out the lives of the prostitutes who pass by as she sits in the courtroom, and to do that she goes after their bosses. In this case she has made it her goal in life to bring down Mr Dynamite (possibly not his given name), and to do so she targets Pashen when the girl is arrested; it's all going to plan as she scares her into thinking Cora is the only one who can help when Willie appears with a lawyer and Pashen runs into his waiting arms, frustrating Cora once again. But she's not going to give in without a fight, contrasting her very upstanding but understanding form of community concern with the title character's wickedness.

This could have come across like a public information film bulked up to feature length, but there was humour and style here within the limits of the typically low budget blaxploitation work, and most of the budget appeared to have gone on Willie's clothes. His fashion sense is outrageous, patently the inspiration for Antonio Fargas in the spoof I'm Gonna Git You Sucka with its bright colours, furs, gold lame, brown leather, so much so that you wonder if Moses was actually making a spoof himself by decking Orman out in those threads. It's a canny way of keeping things interesting visually, and that's not even mentioning Willie's purple and gold Cadillac which he gets to drive in a car chase through derelict New York streets, as was requisite for the day.

The dialogue is likewise over the top and slangy, but never patronising or pandering because an excellent cast sell it with both sincerity and a slightly knowing air, as if to say they were here to tell us something important, but that doesn't mean we can't deliver a movie both dramatic and entertaining. Pashen is ostensibly the battleground between Dynamite and Cora, and boy does she suffer for that, yet after a while we realise the real grit of the story is saving the pimp's soul. He behaves reprehensibly, but he's an attractive persona who we can understand why people would aspire to his lifestyle, so when it starts to slide into desperation for him a strange thing happens in that we gradually feel sorry for Willie. As his plush surroundings are worn away with each successive scene, Orman does a great job of eliciting sympathy in the audience, and for a movie that could have celebrated a criminal lifestyle like the admittedly diverting The Mack does, there are genuine scruples and principles playing out here. Don't dismiss this, it's surprisingly worthwhile. Music by J.J. Johnson.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 633 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which film has the best theme song?
Spectre
The Ups and Downs of a Handyman
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Robert Segedy
Darren Jones
  Asma Amal
  Chris Lawrence
Enoch Sneed
George White
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: