Starring: Mario Van Peebles, Joy Bryant, Ossie Davis, David Alan Grier, Nia Long,
Paul Rodriguez, Saul Rubinek, Khleo Thomas, Rainn Wilson
Director: Mario Van Peebles
Critics and audiences alike have gotten Mario Van Peebles' candid portrait
of his father Melvin's struggle a young, black director during the socially-shifting early '70s.
Determined to make a film that matters, Melvin (played by son Mario) deals with two-faced backers,
a rag tag crew, threatening creditors and various shades of Hollywood hypocrisy. Obsessed and with
everything on the line, including his failing eyesight and family, his only choice is to stick to his guns
and do whatever it takes to get his neo-blaxploitation epic
Sweet Sweetback's Baadassss Song
to the audience for which it was envisioned.
The real-life father and son dynamic brings an intimacy to this inspiring
and often hilarious tribute to the father of black cinema. The result is a
seamless layering of entertaining drama and poignant documentary that
mirrors itself from every angle and never loses its edge.
Price: $24.99 [DVD only]