Dolemite

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Dolemite
Dolemite (movie poster).jpg
Original one-sheet poster for Dolemite
Directed byD'Urville Martin
Produced byRudy Ray Moore
Screenplay byJerry Jones
Story byRudy Ray Moore
StarringRudy Ray Moore
D'Urville Martin
Jerry Jones
Lady Reed
Hy Pyke
West Gale
John Kerry
Vainus Rackstraw
Music byArthur G. Wright
CinematographyNicholas Josef von Sternberg
Edited byRex Lipton
Distributed byDimension Pictures
Release date
  • April 26, 1975 (1975-04-26)
Running time
90 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$100,000 (estimated)
Box office$12 million[1]

Dolemite is a 1975 American blaxploitation crime comedy film and is also the name of its principal character, played by Rudy Ray Moore, who co-wrote the film and its soundtrack. Moore, who started his career as a stand-up comedian in the late 1960s, heard a rhymed toast about an urban hero named Dolemite from a regular at the record store where he worked, and decided to adopt the persona as an alter ego in his act.[2]

Plot[edit]

Dolemite is a pimp and nightclub owner who is serving 20 years in prison after being set up by a rival, Willie Green (D'Urville Martin) and framed by corruptive detectives (John Kerry) and the mayor (Hy Pyke). After being helped out of jail by Queen Bee (Lady Reed), fellow friend and pimp with lobbying for a pardon, he attempts to rekindle his reputation on the streets while trying to get his "The Total Experience" club back under control. He has to face Green (in league with the mayor to get black votes in exchange for immunity from prosecution) alongside corrupt detectives and drug dealers selling to the community. In the meantime, he trains his women to do kung fu before ultimately coming face to face with Green and the detectives while an FBI agent (Jerry Jones) lurks in the shadows watching the proceedings.

Cast[edit]

  • Rudy Ray Moore as Dolemite
  • Lady Reed as Queen Bee
  • D'Urville Martin as Willie Green
  • West Gale as Reverend Gibbs
  • John Kerry as Mitchell
  • Jerry Jones as Blakely
  • Vainus Rackstraw as Creeper

Production[edit]

Moore first developed the character of Dolemite in his stand-up comedy routines, and later appeared on his 1970 debut album, Eat Out More Often,[3] which reached the top 25 on the Billboard 200. He released several more comedy albums using this persona. In 1975, Moore decided to create a film about Dolemite, paying for most of the production out of his own pocket, and using many of his friends and fellow comedians as cast and crew. The film was directed by D'Urville Martin, who appears as the villain Willie Green.[4]

Release[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Reviews aggregate Rotten Tomatoes assigned the film an approval rating of 64% based on 14 reviews, with an average rating of 5.32/10.[5]

Home media[edit]

Dolemite was released to DVD on September 13, 2005 by Xenon Pictures and also as part of a boxed set (The Dolemite Collection) on the same date. A widescreen, high definition remastered version, from an original print of the film, was released on Blu-ray disc on April 26, 2016 by Vinegar Syndrome. The Blu-ray also features the previously released open matte version as an alternate "boom mic" presentation.

Sequels[edit]

A sequel, The Human Tornado, was released in 1976. A second sequel, The Return of Dolemite, was released in 2002 and was later re-titled The Dolemite Explosion for DVD release. A quasi-sequel, Shaolin Dolemite, starring Rudy Ray Moore as Monk Ru-Dee, was released in 1999.

The action comedy movie Black Dynamite (2009) is not a direct sequel, but is loosely based on and parodies Dolemite.

In popular culture[edit]

The song "Glare" on Big Chief's album Drive It Off (1991) opens with a quote from the film: "I'm gonna let 'em know that Dolemite is my name, and f***in' up motha f***as is my game!"[6][7]

Snoop Dogg mentions Dolemite in his final verse on Dr. Dre's 1992 smash single "Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang",[8] and the character has also been name dropped in songs by Wu Tang Clan, Easy E, Beastie Boys, Lupe Fiasco, and A$AP Rocky.[9] Additionally, a number of rappers, including Too $hort, Luther Campbell, Big Daddy Kane, and Del the Funky Homosapien have given testimony to Rudy's influence on them and on rap generally.[9]

Comedian Aries Spears riffed on the Dolemite character during his time on MadTV.

A film about the making of Dolemite, titled Dolemite Is My Name and starring Eddie Murphy as Rudy Ray Moore, was released theatrically and on Netflix in October 2019.[10][11][12]

Schoolly D has a song Signifying Rapper was inspired by Moore's version.

A sample of Dolemite was used as the intro for the song Wit My Crew x 1987 by Lil Uzi Vert, included on his 2015 mixtape Luv Is Rage.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Jet". December 11, 1975 – via Google Books.
  2. ^ Reid, Shaheem (April 1, 2002). "Dolemite Tells Dirty Jokes, Warns Snoop Of His Mic Supremacy - Music, Celebrity, Artist News". MTV.com. Retrieved August 17, 2012.
  3. ^ "Rudy Ray Moore was his name, and 'Dolemite' is just one part of his legacy". Los Angeles Times. October 20, 2019. Retrieved November 11, 2019.
  4. ^ Koch, Stephen (November 4, 2019). "Straight outta Westark: Rudy Ray Moore". Arkansas Times. Retrieved November 12, 2019.
  5. ^ "Dolemite (1975)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved November 23, 2019.
  6. ^ "big chef - glare".
  7. ^ "Big Chief". Discogs (in French). Retrieved July 13, 2020.
  8. ^ "Dr. Dre (Ft. Snoop Dogg) – Nuthin' But a G Thang" – via genius.com.
  9. ^ a b "Rappers Reflect on the Enduring Hip-Hop Legacy of 'Dolemite' Comedian Rudy Ray Moore". Time.
  10. ^ Galuppo, Mia (June 7, 2018). "Eddie Murphy to Star as Rudy Ray Moore for Netflix". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 7, 2018.
  11. ^ McNary, Dave (June 7, 2018). "Film News Roundup: Eddie Murphy to Star in Biopic 'Dolemite Is My Name' for Netflix". Variety. Retrieved October 14, 2019.
  12. ^ McClintock, Pamela (August 27, 2019). "Netflix Dates 'Marriage Story,' 'Laundromat' and Other Fall Award Films". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 27, 2019.

External links[edit]