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Baadasssss! (2003)

How to Get the Man's Foot Outta Your Ass (original title)
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Mario Van Peebles' half-documentary/half-homage to his father Melvin Van Peebles' movie Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song (1971).

Director:

Mario Van Peebles

Writers:

Melvin Van Peebles (book), Mario Van Peebles (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
4 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mario Van Peebles ... Melvin Van Peebles
Joy Bryant ... Priscilla
T.K. Carter ... Bill Cosby
Terry Crews ... Big T
Ossie Davis ... Granddad
David Alan Grier ... Clyde Houston
Nia Long ... Sandra
Paul Rodriguez ... Jose Garcia
Saul Rubinek ... Howard 'Howie' Kaufman
Vincent Schiavelli ... Jerry
Khleo Thomas ... Mario
Rainn Wilson ... Bill Harris
Karimah Westbrook ... Ginnie
Len Lesser ... Manny & Mort Goldberg
Sally Struthers ... Roz
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Storyline

Melvin Van Peebles stunned the world for the first time, with his debut feature, The Story of a Three Day Pass. Filmed in France and selected as the French entry in the San Francisco Film Festival, Melvin's film was awarded the top prize. Saying it was controversial would be an understatement. In 1968 for a black man to walk up to the podium and accept the top festival award for a film he had to go abroad to make--now that's how you make your mark. After his comedy, Watermelon Man, Melvin was determined to push the Hollywood boundaries with the groundbreaking, and even more controversial, Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song. Turned down by every major studio including Columbia, where he had a three-picture deal, Melvin was forced to basically self-finance. Risking everything he had Melvin delivered to the world the first Black Ghetto hero on the big screen--whether they were ready or not! More than 30 years later, history is being fashioned again in the telling of this very tale. Mario ... Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A father. A son. A revolution.

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language and some strong sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Sony Pictures Classics

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 March 2005 (Australia) See more »

Also Known As:

Badass See more »

Filming Locations:

Los Angeles, California, USA

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$60,432, 30 May 2004, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$365,727
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Troy Garity appears uncredited as the singer Donovan. See more »

Goofs

When Melvin glances at his checkbook just before visiting Bill Cosby to request a $50,000 production loan, the Bank of America logo on the check is the current version introduced in 1998. See more »

Quotes

Melvin Van Peebles: Is this something negative, Priscilla? Because if it's negative, I can't even deal with it right now. I'm a broke, pissed off nigger from Chicago, and I'm down to my last cigar.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Dedicated to all the brothers & sisters who opened the door... See more »

Connections

Features The Jack Benny Program (1950) See more »

Soundtracks

Groove Me
Performed by King Floyd
Malaco Publishing
Written by King Floyd
By Arrangement with Position Soundtrack Services
Courtesy of Malaco Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Greatest movie ever made about the movie business
2 January 2005 | by zachsaltzSee all my reviews

"Baadasssss!" beats out Truffaut's "Day For Night" as the greatest movie ever made about the movie business. What Mario Van Peebles does here is nothing short of extraordinary: he manages to inform the viewer about independent film-making while also incorporating an enthralling portrayal of a man obsessed by his unique version of the American dream.

Like "Adaptation", the film is a dizzying array of comedy, satire, family drama, and a little bit of Freudian psychology. Van Peebles, casting himself as his father, obviously doesn't glorify the production, but tells the story of the making of "Sweetback" in a low-key and understandable manner. He doesn't make his father a hero or a villain but rather a man pushed to his limits. The backstage antics are sometimes funny, but more often are simply incredible to believe. Van Peebles' daring use of "American Splendor"-like documentary transitions are also wonderfully effective.

It must be said that I have not seen "Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song" and it's hard to fathom that this film would actually be better upon after viewing it (I'm not suggesting that I won't look for the film next time I'm at the video store). Like its subject, "Baadasssss!" is a revolutionary film, and should not be limited to film buffs or fans of Mario Van Peebles; this is a movie any casual film-goer would thoroughly enjoy.


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