By Nick Maylor
Eddie Murphy has been wanting to make a movie about the life of Rudy Ray Moore for close to ten years now. Moore famously created the character of Dolemite, star of several Blaxploitation films.
The film chronicles Rudy Ray Moore, an over-the-hill musician and comedian who creates the character of Dolemite (an articulate pimp who would go on to inspire early hip-hop artists) and then dedicates himself to make a movie starring his created persona.
The film features a great performance from Eddie Murphy, embracing the comedic genius that made him famous and showing his dramatic chops simultaneously. Endlessly vulgar and utterly hilarious, the film features an ensemble cast including Keegan-Michael Key, Craig Robinson, Mike Epps and Wesley Snipes. It chronicles the shoe-string budget that Moore gathered together to make Dolemite (1975), the first in a series of films starring the character.
Faced with insurmountable odds, endless rejection from studios and all the odds stacked against him, Moore manages to finish his movie which becomes a smash success amongst urban audiences, enough so that it became financially lucrative and warranted several sequels to be made.
The film might suffer from a lack of major conflict as it is basically a story about a group of underdogs trying to get their project off the ground; but there is much to enjoy here and plenty of laughs to be had.
Although facing stiff competition this year from several other actors, Murphy might be a sentimental favourite for the Academy to receive a Best Actor nomination as he was overlooked for his performance in Dreamgirls (2006).
Nick is an actor/writer/comedian/musician from Hamilton, ON Canada. Having been a film nut since the early days of his life, Nick has had an obsession with cinema and popular entertainment. Nick has written for thecinemaholic.com and is currently working on a book about the American Cinema Renaissance (1967-present) with John H. Foote. Nick met John when studying acting at the Toronto Film School, for which John H. Foote was director and Film History professor. The two have been arguing ever since.
Follow Nick on Twitter @NickMaylor