Sunday, July 19, 2015

T for Trouble

I picked Trouble Man (1972) mainly based on the Falcon's recommendation in Captain America: Winter Soldier. He was recommending the soundtrack only, but I figured the movie would be good too - and I was right.

Directed by Ivan Dixon (Hogan's Heroes' Kinch), it stars Robert Hooks as Mr. T, a tough man with a ton of style - we are introduced to him leaving one of his ladies, driving though Santa Monica to his geometric metallic wallpapered pad, where we see his closets full of tailor suits. He heads off to his office, a pool hall, where he hears the pleas of his subjects and whoops an out-of-town pool hustler. Then an old associate and his white crime partner approach him to do a job: Their crap games are being knocked over by a masked gang, and they want Mr. T to fix it for them. He goes undercover to one of the games, but something goes wrong and one of the hijacker is shot. But things aren't what they look like.

It's actually a pretty good plot, except for the usual --SPOILER-- "we called the infallible detective in to witness our plot, because we can fool him for sure" problem. Overall, we get Hooks being a total badass, and plenty of 70s local color - highways, cars, fashions. Sadly, very little of the great Marvin Gay soundtrack mentioned by the Falcon is included, but what's there is great. This is a much less sleazy type of Blaxploitation, which is nice because you don't feel so dirty after watching, but maybe fewer gasp-out-loud moments. It might not sum up the last 50 years for someone who has been hibernating since WWII, but a fun watch.

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