MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 5,216 this week

Bustin' Loose (1981)

 -  Comedy  -  22 May 1981 (USA)
6.0
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.0/10 from 1,623 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 4 critic

Joe Braxton is an ex-con who has been given a second chance to freedom after violating his probation. He has been hired by a school teacher named Vivian Perry to repair and drive an old ... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(adaptation), (story), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb: What to Watch - The One I Love

Interview with Charlie McDowell and Mark Duplass


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 23 titles
created 07 Jan 2011
 
a list of 30 titles
created 07 Feb 2011
 
a list of 26 titles
created 27 Feb 2011
 
a list of 40 titles
created 06 Mar 2012
 

Related Items

Search for "Bustin' Loose" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Bustin' Loose (1981)

Bustin' Loose (1981) on IMDb 6/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Bustin' Loose.
2 wins. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A minor-league baseball player has to spend $30,000,000 in thirty days in order to inherit $300,000,000. However, he's not allowed to tell anyone about the deal.

Director: Walter Hill
Stars: Richard Pryor, John Candy, Lonette McKee
Car Wash (1976)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Car Wash is about a close-knit group of employees who one day have all manner of strange visitors coming onto their forecourt, including Richard Pryor as a preaching 'wonder-man' who is ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Schultz
Stars: Richard Pryor, Franklyn Ajaye, Darrow Igus
Harlem Nights (1989)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

"Sugar" Ray is the owner of an illegal casino, who contend with the pressures of vicious gangster and corrupt policemen who want to see him go out of business. In the world of organized ... See full summary »

Director: Eddie Murphy
Stars: Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor, Redd Foxx
Comedy | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Tired of the slave-like treatment of his team's owner, charismatic star Negro League pitcher Bingo Long takes to the road with his band of barnstormers through the small towns of the Midwest in the 1930's.

Director: John Badham
Stars: Billy Dee Williams, James Earl Jones, Richard Pryor
Blue Collar (1978)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Three workers, Zeke, Jerry and Smokey, are working at a car plant and drinking their beers together. One night when they steal away from their wives to have some fun they get the idea to ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Schrader
Stars: Richard Pryor, Harvey Keitel, Yaphet Kotto
Comedy | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Part live stand-up performance, part documentary, this film is one of comedian Richard Pryor's later stand-up performances. As foul-mouthed as ever, Pryor touches on most of the same topics as in his previous live shows.

Director: Richard Pryor
Stars: Richard Pryor, Paul Mooney
Silver Streak (1976)
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

On a long-distance train trip, a man finds romance but also finds himself in danger of being killed, or at least pushed off the train.

Director: Arthur Hiller
Stars: Gene Wilder, Richard Pryor, Jill Clayburgh
Comedy | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Richard Pryor performs his stand-up comedy act on the Sunset Strip.

Director: Joe Layton
Stars: Richard Pryor, Gene Cross, Julie Hampton
The Busy Body (1967)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Sid Caesar stars as the bumbling right hand man of mob boss Robert Ryan who is sent to find a corpse buried in a suit lined with stolen mob money.

Director: William Castle
Stars: Sid Caesar, Robert Ryan, Anne Baxter
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Dave is deaf, and Wally is blind. They witness a murder, but it was Dave who was looking at her, and Wally who was listening.

Director: Arthur Hiller
Stars: Richard Pryor, Gene Wilder, Joan Severance
Comedy | Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Richard Pryor delivering his one-of-a-kind routine. One of his earliest live performances in 1971 at the Improvisation in New York.

Director: Michael Blum
Stars: Richard Pryor
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A white man goes on trial for having raped a black woman.

Director: Penelope Spheeris
Stars: Richard Pryor
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Jimmy Hughes ...
Edwin DeLeon ...
Edwin Kinter ...
Anthony
Tami Luchow ...
Linda
Janet Wong ...
Annie
Alphonso Alexander ...
Martin
Kia Cooper ...
Samantha
Robert Christian ...
Donald
...
Doctor Wilson T. Renfrew
Bill Quinn ...
Judge Antonio Runzuli
...
Klan Leader
Fred Carney ...
Alfred Schuyler
Edit

Storyline

Joe Braxton is an ex-con who has been given a second chance to freedom after violating his probation. He has been hired by a school teacher named Vivian Perry to repair and drive an old school bus and drive a group of Special kids to Ms. Perry's Washington Farm from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to give them a new home after The Clarmont Center for Children is shut down by the city. The kids have severe mental problems and Joe is not looking forward to the trip at all, but Joe later bonds with Vivian and the children, offering his support and love and changes his outlook on life. But Donald, the social worker and Vivian's lover who gave Joe his break is hot on their tail and wants Joe back in prison. Joe and Vivian must now prevent Donald from sending the children back to Philidelphia where they'll have no future. Written by Geoffrey A. Middleton <gamidd01@morehead-st.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He's mad, he's bad, and he's Bustin' Loose!

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 May 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Family Dreams  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

During production of this film, Richard Pryor suffered serious injury when he accidentally set himself on fire in a drug-related mishap. See more »

Goofs

When Braxton is sentenced to probation and being dragged out the courtroom, he grabs his coat. He is then dragged out the room. When he rushes back in and yells, you can see his coat lying on the floor outside. She he's pushed back outside the final time, his coat is in his hand again. See more »

Quotes

Joe Braxton: [yelling at the kids after they learned of the possible farm loss and are whining amongst themselves] Shut up!
Ernesto: [to Joe] Go take a hike!
Joe Braxton: [smacks him across the face hard enough to knock him down] Shut up!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

The Children's Song
Written by Roberta Flack, Barry Miles & Dwight D. Watkins
Performed by Roberta Flack
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Warm-hearted comedy
2 May 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

When a movie can make you laugh and cry, it's a rare quality. Many people don't have a high tolerance for adults, but are suckers for kids. I am proud to say that I fall into this category, as does Richard Pryor's character Joe Braxton in this film. He plays a foul-mouthed, ill-mannered ex-con, who is, let's face it, a bum. For some reason, though, he is likable. Maybe it's because he still has an optimistic outlook about his life. His biggest strength, which almost proves to be his undoing, is that he is willing to do more for others than he is for himself. This is what I felt made "Bustin' Loose" such a touching movie.

Joe Braxton is a parolee who has been given a second chance to rebuild his life. His only problem is, he can't really seem to find a purpose on the outside, and just doesn't know how to make it. In a hilarious courtroom scene where he is about to be sent back to prison for larceny, in violation of his parole, he is given ten years probation by the judge.

His parole officer, however, is amused, but not at all fooled by the courtroom shenanigans. So, as a favor, his parole officers needs a favor. A group of disadvantaged Philadelphia youths have had their school closed as a result of budget cuts. Cicely Tyson, who portrays her character brilliantly, plays their supervisor who is also the girlfriend of Joe's parole officer. She and the kids need to be driven across country to her family's Washington state farm to start over. Joe is asked to drive the bus and return in 15 days.

This is where the movie takes a wonderful turn for the better and gives some pleasant surprises. It could have been a silly Disney-like movie with cute, fake dialog that cuts corners and makes you want to throw up at the end (like Dead Poet's Society). Instead of all that nonsense and garbage, we heard words of truth, and witness some convincing changes.

At first, Joe sees this as a chore and the kids as nothing but a bunch of losers. Later though, he begins to bond with the kids and discovers, as does the kids, that he actually really does care about them because he doesn't want what happened to him to happen to them. He finds a purpose, and a reason to be happy. He becomes a pleasant, and is actually a warm person after all who just needed the right people to bring out the goodness in him. Perhaps this is because his love for the kids makes him forget about his problems and worry about their well-being.

There are some tough scenes, too. There is boy who has experienced a tragedy, not intentionally, but because of a problem he cannot help. Another one of the youths solicits prostitution to Joe. There are also about whether the kids will be able to keep their new home, or if Joe can actually make it on the outside. All of these scenes show reality and how people find the courage to deal with their own lives. Richard Pryor plays these scenes with a quiet, subtle brilliance. He is not just a funny comedian, he is also a good actor.

The only flaw the movie has is that it seems to lack some little scenes to make Prior's character develop his relationship and bond together with the kids and Cicely Tyson's character. Don't get me wrong, it's usually better to keep an audience wanting more than to drag a movie out, but I think this one may have benefited from more running time. The transition from con to nice guy seemed just a little bit too quick, and I think this could have been the difference between making this a great movie instead of a good one. It's as though the screenwriter didn't sit down and rewrite quite thoroughly enough. That, however, is easily forgiven and forgotten.

I will not give away what happens, I will say only this: I was pleasantly surprised because this movie wasn't just a comedy. There are a lot of serious scenes, too, and the ending is very perceptive about human behavior. Bustin' Loose is not a masterpiece, but it is an entertaining, convincing movie, and it works because of the performances. If you pay attention, you'll be surprised at how moved you are at the end of this delightful comedy, and you might even shed a tear.


0 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Remake of Bustin Loose tifbri
roberta flack song concreteblues
children's song mmisters
Eeire how many fire refernces are in this film michaelganley
children's song yunggunna87
I remember... summerbrights
Discuss Bustin' Loose (1981) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?