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Willie Dynamite [Blu-ray]
(Gilbert Moses, 1974)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Universal Pictures
Video: Arrow Video
Region: 'B' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 37,800,570,404 bytes
Feature Size: 30,770,439,360 bytes
Video Bitrate: 36.11 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: February 6th, 2017
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
LPCM Audio English 2304 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 2304 kbps / 24-bit
English (SDH), none
•Kiss My Baad Asss, a guide to blaxploitation hosted by actor and musician Ice-T, and featuring interviews with Richard Roundtree, Melvin van Peebles, Isaac Hayes and others (24:40)
• Theatrical trailer (2:01)
• Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Sean Phillips
• FIRST PRESSING ONLY: Fully illustrated collector s booklet containing new writing on the film by Cullen Gallagher
Description: The hands-down winner of the all-out best
blaxploitation movie of the seventies, declares author and
artist Darius James in
That's Blaxploitation! Willie
Dynamite may not be as well-known as John Shaft, Sweet
Sweetback or Super Fly s Youngblood Priest, but he certainly
deserves to be.
Willie Dynamite is a pimp who operates in New York City. Willie was a big success as a pimp, but now, just as fast as he rose to the top, he has hit bottom. A former prostitute who has become a social worker tries to get Willie to clean up his life while it is still possible.
When enterprising pimp Willie Dynamite (Roscoe Orman) refuses to agree to a mandate that would assign pimps to specific districts, he sets himself on a collision course with Bell (Roger Robinson), the kingpin of New York prostitution. Worse yet, Willie comes under the scrutiny of a pair of detectives. And then there's Cora (Diana Sands), a former prostitute now employed as a social worker, who aims to take down Willie's operation by preaching reform to his girlsh.Excerpt from MRQE located HERE
The movie, about the decline and fall of a black New York superpimp
nicknamed Willie Dynamite, has a promising beginning. The costumes,
language, melodrama, performances and even the soundtrack music are so
outrageously broad it seems as if the film were putting itself on,
parodying such earlier live-action black cartoons as "The Mack" and
"Cleopatra Jones," Not at all. It wants a piece of the same action.
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
Willie Dynamite gets an impressive transfer to Blu-ray from Arrow (UK). It's dual-layered with a max'ed out bitrate for the 1 hour 40-minute feature. Colors are brighter and truer than SD and there is a consistent layer of grain present. The 1080P supports solid contrast and some minor depth in the 1.85:1 frame. It's very clean showcasing a very solid image. This Blu-ray presents the film about as good as one could expect for digital. I is surprisingly strong.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
The audio is transferred using a linear PCM 2.0 channel at 2304 kbps (24-bit). Score by J.J. Johnson with pieces entitled Willie D., King Midas, and Keep On Movin' On as sung by Martha Reeves (as 'Martha Reeves & The Sweet Things') plus we get the 'Willie Chase' theme. All totally suitable to the genre and sounding as funky as you might anticipate but clean and clear via the uncompressed. Nothing but positives here for the audio transfer as well. There are optional English subtitles and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'B'-locked.
The major supplement is the 25-minute video piece Kiss My Baad Asss, a guide to blaxploitation hosted by actor and musician Ice-T, and featuring interviews with Richard Roundtree, Melvin van Peebles, Isaac Hayes and others. There is also a theatrical trailer and the package has a reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Sean Phillips and for the first pressing (only) a fully illustrated collector's booklet containing new writing on the film by Cullen Gallagher.
February 8th, 2017
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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