Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1970s Darktown Strutters (1975)

Darktown Strutters (1975)

A fun blaxploitation-comedy-musical about the fortunes of a motorcycling black female vocal group as their leader,  Syreena (Trina Parks,) investigates the disappearance of her mother, Cinderella (Frances Nealy).

Along the way, the sisters encounter Commander Louisville Cross (Norman Bartold) a racist, fast-food magnate who made his money with the ‘Sky Hog’ chain (“where the pork ribs are bone suckin’ good”) and looks like Colonel Sanders.

Cross is plotting to manipulate the black community for his own intentions by cloning their leaders.

Syreena leads the local black community in a siege of the Cross Foundation estate –  a plantation in the middle of downtown Watts (Los Angeles) with slaves working a cotton field in the front yard – where they are met by Cross’ pig-men and his allies, the Ku Klux Klan.

Police cars have gigantic sirens, banks have large dollar bills for signs, and a litany of other oversized items give the film an intentionally cartoonish feel. Beneath the superficial layer of gaudy colours and slapstick humour, though, is a razor-sharp critique of race relations in America in the mid-1970s.

Released in some markets as Get Down and Boogie.

darktownstrutters

Syreena
Trina Parks
Mellow
Roger E. Mosley
Theda
Shirley Washington
Miranda
Bettye Sweet
Raunchy
Stan Shaw
Carmen
Edna Richardson
Wired
Christopher Joy
V.D.
Otis Day
Commander Louisville Cross
Norman Bartold
Officer Tubbins
Charles Knapp
Officer Emmo
Edward Marshall
Officer Hugo
Dick Miller
Officer Babel
Milt Kogan
Flash
Gene Simms
Philo Rasberry
Sam Laws
Stuff
Frankie Crocker
Lixie
Della Thomas
Reverend S. Tilly
Ed Bakey
Casabah Volt
Fuddle Bagley
Cinderella
Frances Nealy
Mrs Parasol
Barbara Morrison
Six Bits
Raymond Allen
Inspector Fallow
Charles Woolf
Bo
Alvin Childress
Lorelai
Zara Cully

Director
William Witney