Saturday, October 30, 2010

Kind of Watching It DVD's: The Final Comedown

I had the great fortune to view a genre-classic, 1972's action moving picture, the Final Comedown. This movie had Billy Dee Williams playing one Jimmy Johnson, an angry young man who wants to fight the system. Indeed! Unlike a bunch of similar characters, Jimmy wasn't about speechifying and crying, he was all about firepower. Getting the most of his ire were the cops. Those pigs, as they were called back then. The Final Comedown doesn't start like a regular movie, it just drops you into the action. What was this action? Jimmy getting it on with one of his old ladies. He wasn't the romantic however, his idea of post-coital chatter was his "It's a Black Thing" speech, with insults about white folks on the side. Wow, he's a real charmer.

Most of this movie is so scatter-shot, it's difficult to understand. What is clear, is pretty simple: Jimmy and a bunch of vague revolutionaries are planning a war against the police in the neighborhood. Helping Johnson is a character played by D'Urville Martin, a fixture in '70s action films. Not surprisingly Jimmy's mom doesn't like this kind of back talk/sass mouth. His mother (well played by Maidie Norman) was a veritable hemming and hawing machine, hand-wringing, etc. And you know what else (spoiler alert) they had her in the little ol' alley where Jimmy was bleeding out. Sadz...This movie was filled with folks letting off rounds. The cops got dusted off in short order and so did Jimmy's cohorts. (Jason chokes back a sob thinking about it all.)

What's Odd About This Movie: A lot apparently. One different thing here was having white college kids help out with the struggle. The Final Comedown had a brother-sister characters that were friends with Jimmy.Johnson had philosophical conversations with the brother and was sleeping with the sister.
Aww, that's sweet.

What, What?: Believe it or not, this barker was re-edited and re-released in 1976 as Blast. I've got this version too (shocker). The plot is all but turned upside down and it is even more difficult to follow. Fail!

<---- The Final Comedown/Blast has certainly made the low-budget, reissued/dollar bin rounds for years. Here's some interesting box art. Safe to say, Billy Dee Williams didn't look like this and wasn't 45 when this movie was filmed. This box is a liar, and I'm outraged!

Grade **1/2  The half star is for that groovy Grant Green soundtrack.
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