Thursday, February 17, 2011

Willie Dynamite

Willie Dynamite (1974)
Dir: Gilbert Moses (Roots/Benson)
Starring: Roscoe H. Orman ( Sesame Street/f/x)
Thalmu Rasulala (Blacula/Cool Breeze/Cornbread, Earl and Me)
On the surface Willie Dynamite is the typical Blaxploitation Flick, Complete with pimps , Hoes, and the fuzz trying to take a "Brother" Down. Truly though it is more than that, It is a touching tale of pimps and prostitutes and how the lifestyle affects all involved. Unfortunately My copy of the film was so choppy that at the half way point I could not take anymore screens so I will have to come back later and re edit this one to add shots that are important to my synopsis.
    Willie Dynamite is one of New York Cities most prestigious Pimp's who is so hot that the authorities are constantly on his back. The film opens up with Willies  Stable working a business convention at a upscale Hotel and After collecting his money from his girls he attends a meeting of all of his competition in which Bell another big rig in the game proposes a union of sorts, Dividing all of the profit and territory evenly. All of the Pimps are in on this but, Willie being the greedy man he is denies the proposition.

Unfortunately for Willie things begin to go downhill for him as one of his new girls Pashon gets busted while he is out conducting business with the fellow players. While she is incarcerated A woman named Cora Williams attempts to talk the young Pashon out of the game and tries to convince her to quit hooking and pursue modeling. She starts to entertain this idea while she awaits trial but Willie makes it in the knick of time to post her bail and Pashon follows Willie believing his word. At this point Cora vows to take Willie down and wages war against the pimp. At one point she makes her way to Willies room and talks to all of his stable about how they are being played and how they don't need him to employ them when they would make more profit working for themselves. Willie learns of Mrs.Williams trying to throw salt in his game but is to busy fighting of the fuzz to be concerned as things start to worsen for Mr. Dynamite. The cops are on constant watch and he is taken in for a supposed robbery and while he is in custody his car is towed and once again young Pashon is arrested. Willie tries to keep his pimp hand strong through all the obstacles that appear until the final straw when one evening his main girl is killed in a brawl with a rival stable at another rich convention, at the same time Pashon is once again arrested and Willie is chased by a agent that has been on his tail. After a long pursuit he does escape only to find that Bell has taken over his stable and Mrs. Williams has got Pashon who has been carved up while in prison. Willie is finally taken into custody for tax evasion and at his court date his mother and family finally find what he does for a living , Upon this realization his mother has a heart attack and things look as dark as they can get for our fallen king of pimps.At this point Willie starts to see the error of his ways and decides to get out of the game.

         Willie Dynamite is a  powerful tale of the Pimp game and at first glamorizes the issue like many other Blaxploitation films but, this one does take a sharp turn to reality as we watch the painful downfall of the main character and we also see how this life choice affects everyone involved. The acting and direction of this film is all tremendously well done although it is hard for me to see the guy from Sesame Street in the role of a low life , cut throat pimp. Truth be told though he does a tremendous job portraying the heartless Whore Monger.
 Willie Dynamite is definitely a must see for all fans of Blaxploitation cinema and it truly belongs in the upper echelon of the collection with films like Shaft, Super Fly, The Mack and a few other classics. Surely This is one of the better made films of the genre and you can tell this one had a bigger budget than a majority of the films of this style that were coming out during this time.
 Ass-Kickin': 5 ( Not heavy on the action, But this does not hold the film down what so ever)
Jive:9 ( Dialog is definitely a strong suit in this one)
Funk:7 ( Really solid soundtrack for this one, One of the better ones out there)
Playa's and Whitey's:7 ( superb acting , truly above par for the genre)
Ass and Tittay's:2 (For a film about prostitution this in incredibly low on nudity)
Overall on the Funk-O-Tron: 7 out of 10

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