"Willie's Pimp gear and fashions in this film are so outrageous, and the way he deals with sort of being the modern day Job of the hustler world with everyone from the man, the system, rival pimps, the parking authority (who seem to be towing his car in every scene), a social worker, the neighborhood youth and even his you-know-watches comin' down on him makes this film very watchable... even though in many ways its sort of the Plan 9 from Outter Space of the black action genre (by that I mean RIDICULOUS.) - - At one point I actually thought Willie was going to find Jesus at the end and it was going to turn out to be some church financed films... things really got ridiculous... but yes, it does have a positive ending and a message too ! ! ! There are some other things too that set it apart from other films of the era, including the injections at times of Dolemite style humor, including Willie's revenge on a rival gangster by stripping him of his threads down to his shoelaces and leaving him in his birthday suit down by the waterfront, and in general the behaviour of the white lodge members at the hotel, who during a knife fight between two rival groups of prostitutes seem to be able to say little than, "Yes, please !" and "Thank you, Ma'am" in the backround for no reason whatsoever. And I agree, the the film is definitely almost cartoonish at times... very interestingly cut... really has the feel of those early '70s America International films.Overall, whether you'd award this one best of the genre (in many ways it does rival the Mack) or feel it deserves a Golden Turkey Award, I'd have to say, it is an entertaining watch by any standard... Somebody tell me where that guy got his threads.. especially the green suit on the cover ! ! ! (P.S. Funky, though sparse soundtrack by the late great J.J. Johnson ! ! ! )"
Willie is Dynamite
Scott Woods | Columbus, Ohio United States | 03/11/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The best Blaxploitation and fictional pimp narrative I've ever seen. Of course, that's all terribly relative to the genre and time period. A "good" Blaxploitation film means it has a solid ENOUGH storyline and that the producers spent a little money on it to make it seem like an actual film. This one scores high on both counts, and you find yourself trying to figure out what could possibly happen next. And for a film made in 1973, it's surprisingly fresh.The story starts off with our anti-hero, Willie Dynamite (who was the bald Black guy on Sesame Street. You'll never look at Oscar the Grouch the same again) under seige from all sides, as he is set upon by an old flame-turned-social worker, the cops, and a wickedly funny pimp named "Bell" (played by Roger Robinson) who wants to take Willie's dynamite hoes because he won't join the newly formed pimp organized front.And my God, the outfits.
Willie sports some of the most outlandish stuff you've ever seen, and when he walks down a set of courthouse stairs, prepare to be rewinding the tape a few times.To top it all off, it has a moralty play woven throughout that you both admire and despise: you dig it because it's cool to have a movie from that time with a moral, but without being preachy; you despise it because it can only mean the end of Willie, who, despite his lifestyle, you come to like. Or maybe it's the white fez with triple tassles. I'm not sure.But while Willie is great, the character to watch for is Bell, who steals every scene he's in. He's the cat that does the speech that's clipped into "American Pimp" about vision, and it's even funnier when you have it in context.A well-done farce that pushes all the right buttons, and a perfect movie to watch with a bunch of your wacky friends or REALLY cool family."
Surprising Blaxploitation Flick--Ahead of its Time
TTTWLAM | Houston, Tx USA | 02/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As any fan of the genre knows, Blaxploitation flicks were all about Black empowerment and stickin' it to The Man; however, this often lead to movies about protagonists that were less than savory. Superfly brings us the noble drug pusher; The Mack and Dolemite try to sell the notion of heroic pimp--certainly, the phrase "mixed messages" comes to mind. Willie Dynamite goes the atypical route of showing our flesh-peddling protagonist as a rather dispicable sort, and illustrates the horrible effects of the pimp game on his family, his stable of prostitutes, and his own fortunes. Just as surprising are the film's "villains," as instead of the usual crooked cops, the antagonists are actually in the right. One is a lady social worker (and former streetwalker) who truly wants what's best for Willie's girls, and the other is indeed a police officer, but instead of being a fat, corrupt white guy, he's an angry young Black man who's brimming with righteous indignation at how Willie enslaves womenfolk of his own ethnicity.
Powerful stuff, and completely unheard of in the Blaxploitation ouvre. Add in plenty of over-the-top camp, such as outlandish dialogue and Willie's even more outlandish pimp vines (that means "clothing" for all you Honkies), and you have a unique film that's a must-see for those Down with the Brown.
Way better than the Mack
D. GERALD | 02/15/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Everybody gives the Mack and Dolemite Props but personaly I think the Mack was weak and Dolemite outright sucks. Willie actually has a real story. It doesn't over glamourize being a pimp...in fact it shows why you shouldn't be in that lifestyle. Another thing that sets this movie apart is that the characters are not as stereotypical as people seem to think. Willie is not portrayed as a ghetto superhero he is just a pimp that is getting over. The cops aren't the typical racist you find in most "blaxploitation" movies. They don't hate Willie because he is a black man making money...they hate him because once he uses up his women he discards them like you would do anything thats used up and disposible. In the end Willie doesn't get back at the man or get one last score but his selfish ways actually take an emotional and physical toll on him. Worth checkin' out. Not as cartoonish as other people have said. I'll admit that some of Willie's cloths seem over the top but pimps in the 70's actually wore that stuff look at American Pimp (Don Magic Juan) if you don't believe me. That aside...this is really one of the better movies from the so called blaxploitation era and if you give this movie an honest chance and if you can forget that Willie is played by Gordon from Seaseme street then you'll find that there is a real movie here. Not to mention that the soundtrack is banging!"
Willie oh Willie D
Byron Jackson | chicago, illinois United States | 02/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Willie Dynamite is one of the best movies about Pimpin I have ever seen. I don't know if it is meant to be funny, but it is hilarious. The outfits, the hats, the car, and the walk all make Willie D one of the funniest characters I have ever seen. Two scenes in particular stick out. When he gets all seven of his girls out of jail and is leaving the court to his theme song, with the girls walking behind him. His strutt, and suit make it classic. Second when he "Pimp Jogs" down the stairs of the court house in his green suit with big fur, and fur hat to match. This movie is one of the best, when can I get it on dvd?"