Ninth Street (1999)

R  |   |  Drama  |  10 January 1999 (USA)
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The inhabitants of a deteriorating section of 1968 Junction City, Kansas known as "Junk City" bemoan their existence and revel at the history of their neighborhood during its 1940's heydays... See full summary »


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Credited cast:
Don Washington ...
Kevin Willmott ...
Nadine Griffith ...
Carrie Mae
Byron Myrick ...
Queen Bey ...
Mama Butler
Pop-Bottle Ruby
Father Frank
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Reggie Banks ...
Bar Customer-Opening Scene
Robert Sokol ...
Voiceover Artist (voice)
Debra Washington ...


The inhabitants of a deteriorating section of 1968 Junction City, Kansas known as "Junk City" bemoan their existence and revel at the history of their neighborhood during its 1940's heydays when legendary jazz musicians regularly played its clubs. In 1968, the area has diminished to strip clubs and juke joints inhabited by Vietnam War draftees that pass through from nearby Fort Riley. Heads of the group include a wino who lost a leg in WWII, a taxi dispatcher, a saloon owner, and a crazed bag lady. The younger generation is represented by a young prostitute who is trying to get off the streets, but is forced to continue to work by a no-good boy friend and the need to feed her baby. Martin Sheen also appears as a white minister who prefers the people in the area over his own congregation. Written by John Sacksteder <>

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, a scene of sexuality and some violence




Release Date:

10 January 1999 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

A rich film full of ideas and minor flaws
1 May 2002 | by (Haguenau, France) – See all my reviews

9th Street is a movie you are unlikely to stumble over. It did not get a theatrical release and your local Blockbuster is sure to not have it. If you DO stumble over it, though, give it a try.

Kevin Willmott is a screenwriter and director, an instructor at the University of Kansas and generally a nice guy. His movie has a lot of personal stories to tell and is a film rich in ideas, though they do not all work out.

Willmott models 9th Street after the Jazz music that once made the title-supplying location great. That means the movie has a ramshackle, loose and improvised rythm to it. The main idea is old stuff vs. new stuff and an elegiac look at the glory days of the Jazz Age. There is more, much more in fact, but that is up to the viewer to discover.

As I mentioned, there are some minor flaws. It's greatest strength, the ideas who go all over the place, do not add up at all ends and the violent tone of the conclusion was a bit too much of a turn from the mostly light tone established before.

Martin Sheen's role is basically a cameo and was done as a favor to Queen Bey (who plays the bartender). At least his participation ensured that this movie was distributed. It is a shame that movies like 9th Street that go against the grain are buried like if you stumble over it, be sure to give it a try.

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