A frustrated African-American TV writer proposes a blackface minstrel show in protest, but to his chagrin it becomes a hit.

Director:

Spike Lee

Writer:

Spike Lee
1 win & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Damon Wayans ... Pierre Delacroix
Savion Glover ... Manray / Mantan
Jada Pinkett Smith ... Sloan Hopkins (as Jada Pinkett-Smith)
Tommy Davidson ... Womack / Sleep'n Eat
Michael Rapaport ... Dunwitty
Thomas Jefferson Byrd ... Honeycutt
Paul Mooney ... Junebug
Sarah Jones ... Dot
Gillian White ... Verna (as Gillian Iliana Waters)
Susan Batson ... Orchid Dothan
Yasiin Bey ... Big Blak Afrika (as Mos Def)
M.C. Serch M.C. Serch ... Mau Mau: 1 / 16th Blak (as MC Serch)
Gano Grills ... Double Blak
Canibus Canibus ... Mo Blak
DJ Scratch DJ Scratch ... Mau Mau: Jo Blak
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Storyline

Dark, biting satire of the television industry, focusing on an Ivy League educated black writer at a major network. Frustrated that his ideas for a "Cosby Show"-esque take on the black family have been rejected by network brass, he devises an outlandish scheme: reviving the minstrel show. This is the hook: Instead of white actors in black face, the show stars black actors in even blacker face. The show becomes an instant smash, but with the success also come repercussions for all involved. Written by N. Cognito <nobody@noplace>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Starring the great negroe actors

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The two award ceremony scenes are parodies of two real award recipients whom Spike Lee has publicly criticized: the first, where DelaCroix is fumbling around and yelling "Show me the money!", is a jab at Cuba Gooding Jr.'s enthusiastic victory speech for winning the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor; the second scene, in which DelaCroix becomes a teary-eyed brown-noser to Matthew Modine, is a shot at Ving Rhames' Golden Globe victory in which he gave teary-eyed kudos to Jack Lemmon. See more »

Quotes

Pierre Delacroix: The mission was accomplished. All of these people left the room thinking they would have real input. I was writing this pilot alone. Myself. Me. Moi.
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Crazy Credits

The producers wish to thank ... New York Production Locals ... See more »

Connections

References Eddie Murphy: Raw (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

2045 Radical Man
Written and Performed by Prince
Courtesy of NPG Records
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User Reviews

 
Mixed Feelings
25 May 2008 | by Boston_SoxSee all my reviews

I went through equal parts of liking and disliking this movie. Enough so that I feel the need to write it out here.

First the good: The message of this movie is right on. It really makes you think about portrayals of blacks in popular culture not only in the past, but in the present. How different is the dichotomy between the straight laced Tommy Lee Jones and the "hip/cool" Will Smith in a movie like Men in Black from that between the "massa" ("yes sa") and the black house servant in movies of old? So the movie is good in terms of making you think about these things. All of the scenes showing the black face performances on the "Man-Tan Show" and the montage of blacks in entertainment at the end of the movie are quite poignant, and frankly left me speechless and fixated on the television screen.

The bad: The acting and script left a lot to be desired. Okay, to be fair, Damon Wayans left a lot to be desired. Has a good performance EVER come out of a Wayans brother? I understand he was trying to perform a "white" black man, but every word out of his mouth felt so forced that it was painful to listen to. Other than Wayans the acting, while not superb, wasn't terrible. The script however had a lot of problems. It felt like it was forced along too much, being made to lead to Mr. Lee's agenda rather than unfold naturally as a story. This made it feel rushed at times and completely ludicrous at others.

Overall, if you want to be made to think about race in America and in entertainment, this is a good movie to pick up. However, you will have to sit through some painful acting and a lackluster script, so be prepared.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 October 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bamboozled See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$190,720, 8 October 2000

Gross USA:

$2,274,979

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,463,650
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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