IMDb > Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song (1971)
Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song
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Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song (1971) More at IMDbPro »

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Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song -- After saving a Black Panther from some racist cops, a black prostitute goes on the run from "the man" with the help of the ghetto community and some disillusioned Hells Angels.

Overview

User Rating:
5.5/10   2,879 votes »
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Director:
Writer:
Melvin Van Peebles (written by)
Contact:
View company contact information for Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 March 1973 (Netherlands) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The Film that THE MAN doesn't want you to see! See more »
Plot:
After saving a Black Panther from some racist cops, a black male prostitute goes on the run from "the man" with the help of the ghetto community and some disillusioned Hells Angels. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Deserved its X rating See more (48 total) »

Cast

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Directed by
Melvin Van Peebles 
 
Writing credits
Melvin Van Peebles (written by)

Produced by
Jerry Gross .... producer
Melvin Van Peebles .... producer
 
Original Music by
Earth Wind & Fire 
Melvin Van Peebles 
 
Cinematography by
Robert Maxwell (director of photography) (as Bob Maxwell)
 
Film Editing by
Melvin Van Peebles 
 
Makeup Department
Nora Maxwell .... makeup supervisor
 
Production Management
Clyde Houston .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Jose Garcia .... second unit director
Clyde Houston .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
John H. Newman .... sound editor (as John Newman)
Arthur Piantadosi .... dubbing (as Art Piantadosi)
Clark Will .... sound
Luke Wolfram .... sound editor
 
Special Effects by
Cliff Wenger .... special effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Jose Garcia .... camera operator
Robert Maxwell .... camera operator (as Bob Maxwell)
 
Editorial Department
Jeremy Hoenack .... assistant editor
J.F. Kinyon .... archival editorial services (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Earth Wind & Fire .... orchestrator (as Earth Wind and Fire)
 
Other crew
Chic Borland .... production assistant
Skip Karnas .... production assistant
Winfred Tennison .... production assistant
Priscilla Watts .... production assistant
 
Crew believed to be complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Sweet Sweetback" - USA (promotional abbreviation)
See more »
Runtime:
97 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Canada:R | Canada:(Banned) (Nova Scotia) | Netherlands:18 (orginal rating) | New Zealand:R18 | UK:18 | USA:R (1974) | USA:X (1971)
Company:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
No Hollywood studio would back this movie with an all-black cast, so actor/writer/director Melvin Van Peebles financed it himself, aided by a $50,000 loan from Bill Cosby. It became a hit, earning $15 million.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Indie Sex: Censored (2007) (TV)See more »

FAQ

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11 out of 19 people found the following review useful.
Deserved its X rating, 28 March 2004
Author: nutsy from Olympia, Washington

SWEET SWEETBACK'S BAAD ASSSSS SONG has a reputation as a landmark film. Some hail it a masterpiece for depicting whites, and "The Man" as the oppressor. It is also called the first blaxploitation film (even though COTTON COMES TO HARLEM predates it). In spite of this reputation, few have actually seen it.

The truth is that SWEET SWEETBACK'S BAAD ASSSSS SONG, in spite of the good intentions of its message, is poorly made pornographic trash. At the opening of the film we see an under-aged Sweetback have sex with a fat prostitute- and when I say we see it, I mean we SEE it. Not too much time goes by before we see grown up Sweetback (director Melvin Van Peebles) performing in a live sex show. The viewer is treated to a closeup of the star's member as he strips off a female disguise. Soon thereafter the "plot" starts. Our hero is arrested by the Oakland police. He witnesses them beating a young black man and kills them in his defense. The rest of the film is Sweetback running from the racist cops, sometimes stopping for graphic sex.

The photography in this film is terrible. A number of scenes are shot at night without lighting, basically making the action invisible. There is very little dialogue and Sweetback almost never speaks. When people are talking, they are badly miked and their acting doesn't help matters. The chase scenes are done in psychedelic montage which is both ugly and confusing. There are a number of scenes where the cops are asking members of the black community (the film's real star) as to the whereabouts of Sweetback. These are taken from the cops POV and from how it looks, the filmmakers just approached random people on the street and asked them if they'd seen Sweetback. The editor somehow managed to cut off most of their answers. It's hard to tell what's going on half the time, since the camera work is so bad and the dialogue so hard to hear. At one point Sweetback winds up with some bikers. What's he do? He has a kind of sex-match with one of the female bikers. This scene features enough clumsy disolves to make you dizzy and enough genital shots to get the X rating for any ten movies.

I can't tell why this mess is called such a great piece of work. It fails in every technical aspect, the "art" is bad even for an acid-head movie, and the story is nothing special. If anything, this movie hurts the cause of equality since it essentially depicts blacks as inhuman sex-addicted stereotypes. The whites are pretty much shown as monsters. This is the worst blaxploitation film I've ever seen and easily one of the hundred worst movies ever made. SWEET SWEETBACK'S BAAD ASSSSS SONG is no more than badly made violent pornography for the acid head. It's not a classic and it's not important.

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He didn't really seem like that great of a lover kidpsycho_1999
Worst movie ever made... jcouncil-1
anybody know about it's inital release? Immanuelcant
Portrayal of African-Americans and Sexuality in Contrast to Hollywood laurenzoons-625-130079
How did this movie gross? sherlock-37
Sweet Back Sweet Back Bad Ass SoNg!! Blacbatz
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