|Index||3 reviews in total|
This is the story of a lawyer (Townsend) who watches as the justice system cuts loose dealers, rapists & killers. One night, in a moment of rage, he puts together a packet, naming a dozen thugs who should be put to death. He then sends the packet to his closest friends-and forgets about it. His rage spent, his suburban life goes on. Until he wakes up one morning, goes to get the paper, shambling towards him is one his friends, drenched in someone else's blood. The slaughter has started. This is Townsend's best film. This is Townsend as a hybrid of Spike Lee and Quentin Tarantino. This film grabs you and holds you to the bloody end.
"Black Listed" has a good idea but poor execution. The plot is: Alan
Chambers (Townsend) is a lawyer and sick of his job. He corrals his
friends into forming a vigilante group. Everyone goes along with it at
first, until it turns sour and innocent people start dying, and Alan is
the only one left standing.
Robert Townsend is a good actor. "Hollywood Shuffle" is a comedy classic. This time around, he falters. It's not his problem though.
The problem is the absolutely horrendous transfer this movie has. I say that because every shot is out of focus, and the angles are wrong. You don't see the person talking, you see a shot of the sidewalk instead. It's very distracting.
On the commentary, Townsend never mentions it, which leads me to believe that he was watching a correctly formatted version. How can York Entertainment even release this to the public? Does the company think people are so stupid they don't mind that they can't see a movie correctly formatted to fit their screen? It's embarrassing. Overall, the movie isn't bad, but if you see it, get ready to be mad at York Entertainment.
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Watching "Black Listed", you might think that this was a project by a first-time, inexperienced director. But this was actually made by Robert Townsend, who has had plenty of film experience since his breakthrough feature "Hollywood Shuffle" in the '80s. You'd never guess it, because this is a real amateurish production. The fact that it was filmed in widescreen but presented fullscreen on the DVD (meaning that people's heads are cut off at the sides), may be not Townsend's fault, but everything else is. The movie is badly shot, looking very grainy and like a fourth-generation bootleg. The screenplay is bad, taking no time to set up the characters and the situation at the beginning of the movie, and being vague on details throughout. The acting by everyone is remarkably bad. And Townsend brings in no production values. There are even goofs like seeing the squib cables in a scene where someone gets shot. Again, it's hard to believe a professional like Townsend could make such a terrible movie like this. I'd really like to see a documentary about the making of this movie - it would surely be more entertaining than the movie itself.
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