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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A young boy wanders over to an old age home and finds that all of the
residents are former performers in minstrel shows. The old folks tell
the boy about the grand old days performing and we drift back an
witness what is surely an idealized mega spectacle of a minstrel show.
Mostly stage bound, it is a recreation of show after all, performance of a minstrel show looks like a huge Hollywood musical but in black-face. Its an interesting curio of the sort of thing that most of us have only read about, though much of the humor was cleaned up and became the basis of black vaudeville and modern humor so we've all heard variations on many of the jokes or routines. As filmed variety shows goes this one is one of the better ones I've seen, however as with most films of this sort the interest level goes up and down depending upon who is performing. There is a mix of black and white performers, the only one I recognize is Scatman Crothers. Since many of the whites perform in black-face some people are going to find this offensive. I wasn't offended because I didn't take it as anything other than what it was, a by product of a bygone era. While that doesn't make it right, it does put things into a historical context that at least shows us how far we've come. (The commentary on the VCI DVD seems to further put things into context) Worth a look if you run across it.
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