DVD Review: Dolemite (1975) PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Projectionist   
Monday, 22 August 2011 02:00

dolemite poster dolemite posterFrom time to time a Hollywood outsider will decide to play the game his own way, he writes, directs and finances his own movie. Ocasioanally we'll get a "Clerks" or a "Hollywood Shuffle". But more often, we get a "Dolemite".

"I'm the one who has the elephants roostin' in trees, and all the ants wearin' BVDs."

"Dolomite is my name, and f@&*in' up motherf@&*ers is my game!"

"Tell him I want him out of here in 24 hours. And 23 of 'em are already gone."

Dolemite (1975) is a movie with a strong moral: Keep your pimp hand strong, and along with your all girl army of Kung-Fu killers, you will rule the ghetto! Well, at least the part of the ghetto around the Ralph's Market over in Inglewood... But not the part over by the Sav-On, 'cause that part still belongs to Willie Green.

(Trailer warning, NSFW, we removed the quick boobie flash, but there's plenty of "naughty words" in the trailer, so if that bothers you, don't watch it. If we took all the Fs and MFs out of the trailer, it'd be a quick flash of a blue screen with "DOLEMITE" written on it.)


rudy ray moore rudy ray mooreThis is not a random screen grab that just happened to catch Rudy Ray Moore with his eyes closed, this is what the editor selected as a freeze frame for the trailer. It's tough to be a blaxploitation hero! Takes sumpin' out of a man!

The movie begins with Dolemite in prison, he's is serving a 20 year sentence for possesion of stolen furs and a half a million dollars of narcotics) when he's suddenly called to the wardens office. The warden (who Dolemite considers a "rat soup eatin' motherf***er) wants to talk to Dolemite.

queen bee queen bee

Queen Bee, a friend (and sometimes more, of course) has almost convinced the warden that Dolemite may be innocent of the charges The Man put him in prison on, as shown in a sudden flashback, (at least I think it's a flashback, because it's a sudden cut to a playback of Dolemite's arrest. Hell, it's probably just a case of lousy editing, maybe it even belonged in another film?)

Dolemite comes out of his house and a "FBI agent" with either an accent or a speech impediment demands to search his car. Of course he finds the goods that have obviously been planted in D's trunk in an obvious attempt to keep a brother down. Dolemite don't stand for this shit, and immediately starts kicking ass with kung-fu moves so fast and powerful, the victims react without being touched. The waves of power-fu even cause one "agent" to literally jump into the trunk of Dolemite's fine ride!

jump in trunk jump in trunk"I'll just jump out of your way Sir!"

Believe it or not, the bad guys are able to defeat Dolemite, and he's carted off to jail. We find this is all put into motion by Wille Green (D'Urville Martin), Dolemite's enemy. Wille wants to take over Dolemite's businesses, both legal and not so legal. (Did I mention Dolemite appears to be in the um, pimpin' bidness?)

After another abrupt jump the film cuts to the warden again, telling Dolemite that "In the 2 years you've been in here the dope trafficing in your neighborhood hasn't changed, in fact it's gotten worse!" (Um, huh?) Turns out a drive-by shooter killed Little Jimmy. (This flashback has the doodla-doodla-doodla flashback screen effect, must've been REAL important to the story...)

The upside of all this is that the warden is going to spring Dolemite so he can clean up his hood. The downside is that won't be sprung until the next afternoon, and Dolemite has to act like nothing is going on, and if you've made it this far into the movie, you know Dolemitie can't act for sh*t!

The next day, a Caddy pulls up full of Dolemite's whores... um I mean his "all girl army of kung-fu killers". I can't believe they squeezed that many women into one Caddy, I know it's a 70s Caddy, but shit, it was like watching a bunch of clowns get out of a little car at the circus!

They've brought Dolemite a stiff drink, a little lovin', some weapons, and of course, new threads. So, of course Big D begins undressing right at the prison gate. Unfortunately, the girls forgot D's preference in undergarments...

cotton drawers cotton drawers"You know I don't wear no fu**ing cotton draws!"

 On the way back to the city, after the required sex scene, of course, they discover someone is following them. Dolemite has the driver pull to the side of the road, where he brings out a handy machine gun and kills all the bad guys, but not before doing some cultural outreach with the last bad guy.

cultural outreach cultural outreach

Learn the Dolemite Dance Method! Just $19.95! Operators are standing by!

 While out on surveillance, Dolemite is threatened by two dirty cops. (I know, right? But, it's required by the union in movies like this.) One of the cops is vaguely familiar...

will farrel pre SNL will farrel pre SNL

Why Will Ferrel doesn't include this in his Filmography I'll never know...

And, as his partner, John Kerry. (No the other one.) This guy was so good at playing this type of part, he got to do it again 35 years later in "Black Dynamite"

joking joking

"Project Kansas! Gonna take care of all you N... Oh, sorry, forget I said anything!"

He of course kicks their ass, but not before avoiding the dreaded "death by boom-mike". Which apparently was a real threat in the 70s.

boom mike2 boom mike2

boom mike3 boom mike3

There are quite a few "action" sequences like this, but Dolemite always finds time for the ladies!

mirror sex mirror sex

"Damn! I look good makin' it with the ladies! I want a mirror like this on every wall in my crib!"

It's pretty standard sploitation fare from here on, just badly done. There are some highlights like:

earth wind fire and black elvis earth wind fire and black elvis

An Earth, Wind & Fire/James Brown/Elvis Tribute Band!

seatcover sport jacket seatcover sport jacket

A man wearing a seatcover from a 1974 Plymouth Horizon!

kung-fu killer kung-fu killer

Female Kung-Fu Killers!

spleen removal spleen removal

Spleen removal courtesy of Doctor Dolemite!

I don't want to ruin anything for anyone, but suffice it to say, this movie is... Yes I'm a gonna say it! So bad it's good! Run, do not walk to your local video store, Netflix queue, or Amazon. Buy, borrow, or steal Dolemite. And pick up your favorite hallucinogenic or some cheap liquor on the way home, it'll make it all just a little bit easier to comprehend.

Last Updated on Monday, 22 August 2011 22:07

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