The mission of The Department of Afro-American Research Arts and Culture to identify the global significance of the creative contributions pioneered by an international diaspora of Blackness
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Sunday, June 5, 2016

Maurie [a.k.a. Big Mo'] (1973)


When an African-American basketball star, Maurice Stokes (Bernie Casey, Hit Man and Dr. Black, Mr. Hyde) suffers sudden paralysis, his white friend,  Jack Twyman (Bo Svenson) and teammate assists in his rehabilitation. Janet MacLachlan (Uptight and Sounder) also stars. Based on the true story of Maurice Stokes.

This film straddles the line of Blaxploitation vs. Black Cinema. Interpretation or how one defines is subjective to the individual, but the social context is interesting.

"There’s a massive subtext going on here about white guilt. They are certain to clarify several times that Twyman, “Wasn’t all that good of friends with Maurie.” Of course, they never delve any further into it, and I’m probably just making it up in my head because I’m bitter and can’t understand doing something for anyone.

-The Beta Max Rundown 

I can see how the author of the article would come to that conclusion, however, one could also see it from the "doing a good deed" standpoint, that Twyman was just helping. Of course, a film being made in the 70s that was practically know for exploitative purposes, it wouldn't be difficult to see how one could associated this film as Blaxploitation.


Thursday, May 26, 2016

Hot Pants Holiday [a.k.a. Tropic Heat] (1971)

  • Christopher St. Johns
  • Tudi Wiggins
A frustrated white New York housewife goes on vacation in the Caribbean and has an affair with a local man.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Maurice Jarre - Mandingo (Soundtrack, 1975)

Treat for Maurice Jarre fans! Two previously unreleased Paramount film soundtracks on one CD! Anchoring is 44-minute score from Mandingo, vivid adaptation of Kyle Onstott tale of Southern slavery, directed by Richard Fleischer, starring James Mason, Perry King, Ken Norton, Susan George. Dino Delaurentiis produces film after earlier attempts by others fail, then works with screenwriter Norman Wexler to ensure novel's potent violence, sex, sadism arrive intact on screen. Maurice Jarre tackles challenging assignment, brings melodic gifts to fore, then adds colors of banjo, dissonant strings, primitive percussion, other disturbing ideas to create unsettling feel for lurid plantation life. Contrasting styles provide considerable depth. Score also features Muddy Waters vocal ("Born In This Time"), used in film at Jarre's request, who draws upon melody/countermelody of song throughout his orchestral score. Presented from 2" 16-track stereo session masters housed in Paramount vaults. Second score finds Jarre in still-melodic but now breezier, jazz-like mode for Neil Simon's Plaza Suite, directed by Arthur Hiller, featuring Walter Matthau, Maureen Stapleton, Lee Grant. Brief score melds both warm humor, light drama into one cohesive musical showcase of composer's tuneful talent. Lukas Kendall helms album assembly, John Takis provides detailed liner notes, Joe Sikoryak provides colorful graphic design. Maurice Jarre conducts both scores. Intrada Special Collection CD available while quantities and interest remain!

01. Born in This Time (Muddy Waters, vocal)
02. The Dinner Table/Pearl’s Bath/Reading Lesson
03. Meet Mr. Wallace
04. Ellen’s Seduction
05. First Meeting No. 1/First Meeting No. 2
06. Wedding Day
07. Blanche Comes Home
08. Display of Strength
09. Blanche’s Problems
10. Ellen Pleads
11. After Cicero’s Hanging/Sickness
12. The Fight
13. The Earrings
14. A Gift for Blanche
15. To the Market (Muddy Waters, vocal)
16. Prelude to the Love Scene
17. Blanche and Mede
18. Ellen Is Jealous
19. Death Potion
20. End Credits (Muddy Waters, vocal)
21. Brothel Baby
22. Pearl’s Bath (original version)
23. Meet Mr. Wallace (original version)

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

The Obsessed One (1974)




It’s a special night for Tyrone Pedro, as he is marrying a girl of his dreams on his wedding day. On the same day, a bunch of beatniks play a deadly game of Tarot cards, and the cards read MURDER, so they go out for a demented spree of murder & violent fun. The beatniks find Tyrone and his new wife in the park. They beat up Tyrone and brutally rape his wife and kill her. Tyrone is left at the scene, beaten up. The police arrest Tyrone as a suspect for his wife’s murder, but Tyrone escapes to find those beatniks and to avenge his wife’s death. Tyrone is the obsessed one, and nothing will come between him and vengeance. During his quest, he encounters a sadistic pimp, SUGARCANE , who walks into Tyrone's path with an attitude! Murder, revenge and car chases will explode off your screen in this grindhouse action film shot in Guyana!