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In the mid-1990s, two inmates bury the burned bodies of two lifers at Mississippi's infamous Parchman Farm; a third old-timer relates their story. They'd served 65 years for a murder they didn't commit, framed by a local sheriff while buying moonshine whiskey for a Manhattan club owner to whom they owed money. In flashbacks we see this odd couple thrown together (Ray is a fast-talking con man, and Claude is a serious man about to start work as a bank teller), the loss of Ray's watch (sterling silver, from his daddy), the murder and trial, the hardships of Parchman, and the love-hate relationship of Claude and Ray as they spend 65 years bickering and looking for a way to escape. Written by
Ray and Claude arrive at the Mississippi prison in 1932. They spend give 65 years in jail, meaning the last year the movie takes place in is 1997. And Ray says in that year that he's 90 years old, meaning he was born in 1907 (Claude was also probably born in that year or somewhere close to it). So they were 25 when they came to jail, 37 when they are shown in the 1944, and 65 when they are shown in 1972. See more »
In the scene where Jangle Leg introduces himself to Claude, they are seated beside each other with Ray sitting beside Jangle Leg. Then the camera switches to a shot of Ray. If you look below Ray you can see Jangle Leg seated below him. See more »
[standing on a crate of bottles]
Damn, one of my toes in the bottle, damn it, Ray.
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Bloopers are shown during the closing credits. See more »
If you're not a fan of Eddie Murphy's humor, then skip this one.
The movie begins in modern times, 1997, with the main characters' funerals. The movie then flashes back to 1932 to begin telling their story, and continues as they age in prison in Mississippi.
They were "petty criminals" but were sentenced to life in prison for a murder they did not commit. However, being black in 1930s Mississippi did them no favors. The story that unfolds is irreverent and funny and has enough twists along the way to keep things very interesting.
I can't understand why the average rating of this movie is below "6". I give it "8" of "10" for its overall entertainment value, plus a few "life's little lessons" thrown in. I think it is one of Eddie Murphy's best movies.
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