Who’s in it?

Eddie Murphy, Wesley Snipes, Craig Robinson, Kodi Smit McPhee, Keegan Michael Kay, Mike Epps.
The Basics

This is the new feature from Director Craig Brewer (Black Snake Moan, Hustle and Flow) and is a reincarnation-vehicle for star Eddie Murphy, who’s been down and out for a very long time just like the protagonist in the movie. Here, he plays Rudy Ray Moore, a man hungry for all kinds of fame and attention and later turns into a Blaxpoitation influencer in the film industry. Starting from a middle-aged clerk at a record-store to making people hysterical as a singing stand-up comedian, Rudy adopts the popular pimp-moniker Dolemite and sells many trashy, R-rated records before taking his chances at the movies.

What it’s About

Rudy Ray Moore is almost a household name now mostly due to his super hit cult Blaxpoitation film, Dolemite, where he mixed absurd, trashy, and crude humor with martial arts and sex. Dolemite strangely appealed to a lot of African-American people in the 1970s, especially since the super hit film – Shaft– had recently been a touchstone in African-American filmmaking. Eager to follow such success, Rudy uses his recent fame and puts together a crew hiring popular Director D’Urville Martin (Wesley Snipes), screenwriter Jerry Jones (Keegan Michael Kay) and many others to work with him on his film. The movie just doesn’t seem to come together, and after wrapping-up, no distributor wants to buy Dolemite. After he finally gets to screen it, people come in droves to see the film and it attracts the attention of a major distributor.

The Verdict

Dolemite is my Name maybe a touch insensitive in its methods and storytelling, but it sure as hell entertains! And, Eddie Murphy harkens back to his R-rated heydays of the 90s to put on an incredibly entertaining performance.