Time will tell. But we like “Dolemite is My Name” for helping us get in touch with some black history. As well as the other things it represents such as resilience, friendship and the love of fans.
“Dolemite is My Name” brings together some old faves including Eddie Murphy, Wesley Snipes, Chris Rock and Snoop to tell the story of Rudy Ray Moore.
Moore was a 1970s stand-up comedian turned filmmaker who came to the limelight at a time referred to as the Blaxploitation era.
Moore could not get air-play for his record and worked at record store to get by. At night, he worked as an MC for his friend Ben Taylor (Craig Robinson) and his band at a club. He asked the club owner for time to do comedy. But was turned down. After an encounter with a destitute who rhymes, Moore got the idea to create a persona called “Dolemite.” When Moore he took the stage as Dolemite, the crowds loved him. And that was the beginning of his journey to stardom. He decided to make comedy records. But his style was unconventional. Outrightly vulgar so he faced a lot of resistance from record labels. But he continued to defy the odds which eventually rewarded him with a successful career.
Dolemite had a large following. Today, it is believed to have influenced rap. But what’s most important about this story is Moore’s tenacity and the hand of friendship he extended to singer, Lady Reed (Da’Vine Joy Randolph), despite his own struggle.
Murphy gives a strong performance enhanced by good costume and production design.”Dolemite is My Name” is streaming on Netflix.
Directed by Craig Brewer
Produced by: Eddie Murphy, John Davis and John Fox