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Top of the Heap (1972)

R  |   |  Drama  |  2 June 1972 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 74 users  
Reviews: 3 user | 4 critic

A Washington D.C. cop is proud to be one of the few African-Americans on the force. He is not well loved by his peers or by street people. Trouble erupts when he is overlooked for a promotion.

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Title: Top of the Heap (1972)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher St. John ...
George Lattimer
...
Black Chick
Florence St. Peter ...
Viola Lattimer
Leonard Kuras ...
Bobby Gelman
John Alderson ...
Captain Walsh
Patrick McVey ...
Tim Cassidy
...
Taxi Driver
Ingeborg Sørensen ...
Nurse Swenson (as Ingeborg Sorensen)
Ron Douglas ...
Hip Passenger
John McMurtry ...
Dope Dealer
Damu King ...
Pot Peddler
Ji-Tu Cumbuka ...
Pot Peddler
...
Rookie Policeman
Jerry Jones ...
Club Owner
Willie Harris ...
Bouncer
Edit

Storyline

A Washington D.C. cop is proud to be one of the few African-Americans on the force. He is not well loved by his peers or by street people. Trouble erupts when he is overlooked for a promotion.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

His rage was the illness of the times! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 June 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Patrullero Lattimer  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)
See  »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Referenced in Married with Children: Top of the Heap (1991) See more »

Soundtracks

Put Your Hand in the Hand
Words and Music by Gene MacLellan
Arranged by J.J. Johnson
See more »

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User Reviews

The Not-So-Bad Lieutenant

I have a feeling that Abel Ferrara may have seen this film at some point before he made "Bad Lieutenant" (much as Sam Raimi undoubtedly saw "Equinox" before he made "Evil Dead"). There are a certain number of striking similarities between the two films: cop who seems to hate the burden of his wife and family, hates his job, is corrupt, does drugs, is p****d off and scornful of just about everything around him and...well, I won't say any more than that because I might spoil it for viewers who haven't seen one or the other film. One big difference between the two, though, is that Christopher St. John's character in "Top of the Heap" is rather more well-developed. He has an internal life (represented on-screen by a very odd astronaut/moon-shot fantasy/dream), so we have a certain understanding, if not necessarily a sympathy for his actions and motivations. This is a rather obscure (I'd never heard of it before I found my long-out-of-print Unicorn Video pre-record) but very underrated piece of filmmaking and it doesn't deserve to be heaped together with other low budget blaxploitation films of the period. It's really too bad that Christopher St. John hasn't directed another film since. I found his work a lot more interesting than the majority of Ferrara's.


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