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

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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:
As long as you don't study it for its technique... See more (48 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

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:
Film debut of Mario Van Peebles.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in American Grindhouse (2010)See more »

FAQ

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30 out of 39 people found the following review useful.
As long as you don't study it for its technique..., 1 May 2003
Author: morakanabad from The Celluloid Pit

This is a film that has several things going for it, none of them technical. The idea of shooting a movie with a largely black cast on dark streets at night without any sort of extra lighting is... well, a bad one, and coupled with its mic-in-the-cameraman's-back- pocket sound mix, an awful lot of the first half of the movie is just shy of being incomprehensible. Add in an editing job that suggests somebody was busy talking on the phone during the cutting of several key scenes, and you could have a real patience- tester of a film on your hands.

Thankfully, the mood of the film is positive enough that its deliriously illogical plot actually works in its favour. Greasy kid Mario van Peebles (minus the "van" here) is transformed into strapping man Melvin van Peebles in a meaningful encounter with a hooker, and you can buy it. On-the-lam hero Sweetback is challenged to a duel by bikers, and nobody so much as blinks when he suggests that it should be a duel of sexual prowess... hell, they don't even seem to care that he doesn't need to move in order to drive his women wild. He's even brought back from the dead by the chorused voices of The Black Community, and it all sort of makes sense, kind of.

In fact, it isn't until the very last shot of the movie, when you realize that 90 minutes and change have built up to... well, nothing much, really, except maybe a shred of belief in the power of an act of will, and perhaps the promise of a sequel, that you feel like taking the movie to task for its gaping technical flaws again. Even then, it's made so earnestly that I don't really have the heart to slag it for its ineptly-blocked camerawork and dreadful acting. I've seen much worse from filmmakers who weren't trying to change the world by giving a damn, so instead I'll talk it up by calling it the spiritual ancestor of the basketball-teleportation ending to He Got Game, and pretty much everything in The Matrix, too. That it was largely the work of one hugely inspired guy makes it all the cooler, so struggling filmmakers, take note! As long as you crib your technique from other places, Sweet Sweetback's Baad Asssss Song should be an inspiration to you.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song (1971)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Things I learned while watching this movie kidpsycho_1999
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
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