tn_blackdynamiteAttention New Yorkers, Los Angelenos, Philadelphiacs, Atlantians, Chicagoians and Seattleors:

I got an email from BLACK DYNAMITE co-writer/director (and one time outlawvern.com commenter) Scott Sanders. As I feared, he says the lack of a serious advertising budget is resulting in low ticket sales, and “Unless word gets out about the film soon, we have very little chance of surviving the weekend.”

It turns out that having the trailer online and showing the ad one time on BET doesn’t get everybody’s attention. Just ours.

Sorry for the infomercial but I have an interest in this doing well because 1) I want to see a sequel and 2) your life will be made better by seeing this movie, and I am a humanitarian. So here is my outlaw guarantee: if you go pay full price to see it this week and you regret it, contact me. In lieu of a refund I promise to review the movie of your choice. Even if it’s the fucking Boondock Saints or some shit like that, I’ll do it for you. But I probly won’t have to because this movie will kick your ass and grow you a mustache.

blackdynamitescoreIn other BLACK DYNAMITE news, the soundtrack and score albums finally came out this week. They didn’t get them at my local record store though, so I have them on order. But I’m listening to them online right now – skip over that hip hop remix (not sure what that’s about) and you can hear what’s actually on the albums. The soundtrack is the original songs by Adrian Younge and the score is all library music, which explains part of why the music sounds so authentic – it is authentic. But listening to those Adrian Younge songs, I swear I forget it’s not one of the vintage collections I have – even the recording quality sounds 1976. That attention to detail is part of what makes the movie so great.

links and more info if you click the ‘click here’ thing

My review from when it played the Seattle International Film Festival (and won the audience award)

Official Black Dynamite Website

Fight Smack in the Orphanage


BLACK DYNAMITE Locations & Theaters
Regal E-Walk Stadium
Angelika Film Center
AMC Burbank Town Center
The Bridge
AMC Loews Cherry Hill
Regal Atlantic Station
Regal Hollywood
AMC North Dekalb Mall
AMC Parkway Point
AMC Discover Mills 18
AMC Pacific Place 11
Varsity Theater
Regal Parkway Plaza 12
AMC Loews 600 North Michigan
AMC Loews Pipers Alley
ICE Chatham
This entry was posted on Friday, October 23rd, 2009 at 12:22 pm and is filed under Blog Post (short for weblog). You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

49 Responses to “Save BLACK DYNAMITE”

  1. Damn, I was afraid this was gonna happen. The theater was half empty when I saw it opening night, but everybody who did show up had a great time. Seriously, if you guys have the opportunity to see this and you don’t, you are officially part of the problem.

  2. By the way, here’s an entertaining interview with Michael Jai White and Scott Sanders: http://www.avclub.com/articles/michael-jai-white-and-scott-sanders,34458/

  3. This sucks. When the red-band trailer came out I loved it and showed it to all my buddies who flipped out for even more then I did. In fact, a month ago, when I saw one for the first time in several months, he brought up Black Dynamite and how much he was looking forward to it, even though I’d forgotten it by then, seeing as how there were no ads or reviews to read for sixth months. There is no place within a hundred miles playing this movie, so I have to wait for the DVD and can’t support it. Although since Vern brought up the Boondock Saints, let me point out that that was a movie that was shown on six screens, was panned by everyone who saw and dumped to Blockbluster within weeks, and now the sequel is a week away. So don’t lose hope Vern!

  4. I would actually love it if Vern tore up Boondocks Saints like a parking ticket. God, I hate that movie.

  5. Wow, the soundtrack sounds amazing! And wax poetics is a really great magazine. Reminds me of some David Holmes/portishead type beats. Also, you should check out sharon jones and the dap kings. I think they’re probably on the same level of authenticity in recreating some old good soul/funk. But to think that this Adrian Younge guy did it all by himself is crazy.

    As for the movie itself, my friends are coming from out of town and we’re planning on seeing it. Even though its playing about an hour and a half away from where i’m staying, we know its gonna be worth it! Just hoping it’ll still be there when we do.

  6. there is still a serious lack of theaters that will show type of film in most cities, and it aggravates me to no end. by “this type of film” i mean independant “genre” cinema – too underground for the multiplex but not arty enough for most indie theaters. seems like a missed opportunity on someones party, and genre fans suffer as a result. (the ones that give a shit about seeing something in the theater do anyway, although maybe there arent enough of us left for anyone to give a shit)

  7. oops that first sentence should say: “theaters that will show [THIS TYPE] of film”

  8. also it should say someones part not someones party.

    i should go to someones party though.

  9. You can come to my party, ron. You seem like a good dude.

    I just bought the score and the soundtrack. I have now officially spent more money on this movie than any movie since Kill Bill, and I haven’t even bought the DVD yet. I’ve done my part.

  10. God-motherfucking-double-damnit. I would eat a baby to see this movie, but the nearest showing is 677 miles away. Guess I might end up waiting till it’s on video. God-DAMNIT.

  11. Yeah, I figured as much. Didn’t know it was coming out until I saw the ad in the paper on the day of release. Saw it last Saturday night and there was a total of 5 people in the theater (not counting me and two others).

    I was really hoping this would end up being the little-movie-that-could, but I guess Paranormal Activity snatched that slot instead. That’s too bad, because BD is definitely good times (sure as shit better than PA) and I wish this flick wouldn’t have to wait for DVD and the eventual midnight shows to get its due.

  12. It’s surprising how shitty San Francisco is for movies. Every day in New York you have several awesome movies to choose from, not to mention there are worth while concerts to go to every night. New York is pretty sweet.

  13. It’s also playing at least three locations in Orange County, CA this weekend (That’s about 45 minutes south of L.A., for those of you not from the area):

    AMC Theaters 30 at The Block (in Orange)
    Edwards Long Beach 26
    Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21

  14. Oh good, so there are at least a few other screens. The theater listings were on the email, but I guess doublecheck your local listings to be sure.

  15. Majestyk, what about Boondocks do you hate so much? (everyone besides Majestyk ignore this topic and keep talking Black Dynamite, because I want to see this fucking movie so make it expand)

  16. Couple of more California locations for “Black Dynamite”, these in the Inland Empire (the place, not the David Lynch movie, though I’m sure Mr. Lynch would find it peachy keen):

    AMC Ontario Mills 30
    AMC Theaters Covina 30

  17. Pretty much everything, which kind of surprises me. I have nothing against movies as utterly stupid and shallow as Boondocks, but for some reason, I can derive no ironic enjoyment from it whatsoever. It just angers me to no end. I think it has something to do with the fact that it is determined to be the ne plus ultra of coolness, from its use of slow-mo to its hepcat dialogue, but it is so inept at all of the things it attempts to do that it ends up making the actually cool things that that it bit its style from look ridiculous. It not only makes me hate it, it makes me enjoy similar-but-better things less. You know a movie is powerfully bad when it causes collateral damage on movies that have nothing to do with it.

  18. Holy shit, these two soundtracks are AMAZING. I might be biased because I am a fan of the funk in my daily life, but some of this shit is just so badass that it shouldn’t matter if you’re a Dave Matthews fan. If you can’t see the movie, download these babies to whet your appetite for the awesomeness that awaits you on DVD.

  19. Yes, please review Boondock Saints — with extreme prejudice.

    Don’t worry about Black Dynamite, I’m sure it will be fine in the long run. Isn’t a movie like this destined to fail at the B.O. so it can become a true cult hit later on? I mean, isn’t that the natural order of things?

  20. Review of my choice?!? Hmmmm….maybe should buy like 10 tickets and see what happens.

  21. Man , I’m so sick of living in Italy.

    On the other hand , Vern’s right , even that soundtrack alone will grow you a mustache , and a pair of beards in your armpits . Thanks Vern , now I look like a baboon .

  22. Man, I need this fucking movie to play in Winnipeg. Ordering the soundtrack on vinyl right now.

    Fuck The Boondock Saints.

  23. Unfortunately, this type of thing only plays near me if it gets attached to the ‘weird’ bill on the annual film festival (which has been and gone), because stuff like this has less opportunity to grow in big cities now days, which then means it has less opportunity to grow out in the wops of the western world like New Zealand.

    Also, Boondocks Saints was pretty tedious to me, but I’m at the point where I think it’s kinda got more negative attention than it deserves – I don’t mean in the sense people are being too harsh, more in that it’s not even a satisfying movie to hate.

  24. For the record, if I do get a chance to see this movie in theaters, and I don’t like it, I’m totally asking Vern to review The Sound of Music. That’s what’s on the line at this point.

  25. Atlanta is the closest to me and I’m afraid I can’t drive 5 hours to see a movie

    but I’ll definitely buy the blu ray

  26. Stuntcock Mike: I like to think that you can take comfort in the fact that, even if BLACK DYNAMITE isn’t playing nearby, at least you can probably open your window and see Guy Maddin walking down the street. That’s gotta be cool.

    Surprisingly, BLACK DYNAMITE played here in Toronto at the After Dark festival, won “bronze” (silver went to TREAK R TREAT and gold to DEAD SNOW), had an incredible audience reaction and good reviews, but has not yet been picked up by one of our many repertory theaters. I’ve sent off email to several of these theaters asking them to bring it back.

    And the soundtrack is killer.

  27. The Green Manalishi

    October 24th, 2009 at 1:55 am

    At least you folks out in the states get the chance to watch it. What about us Britfags?!

  28. Dead Snow got the gold over Black Dynamite? That’s a travesty. That movie deserves the Leslie Vernon Award for Outstanding Achievement in Not-That-Greatitude.

  29. Shit, as much as I love living in Portland, sometimes it sucks to be a movie fan here. Seems like all the small time/fringe movies skip us for Seattle, and Black Dynamite is no exception. It’s at least a three hour drive, and that’s if the interstates aren’t cocked up, which they almost always are. Looks like I’m gonna have to pass, but I’ll check it out if—miracle of miracles—the film expands, or when it hits DVD.

  30. Leslie Vernon is far less than not that great.

  31. Mr. Majestyk : Totally agree with you. And the audience reactions to the two films were miles apart: the walls of the theatre were rattling with laughter during BLACK DYNAMITE, while DEAD SNOW, at best, had a snicker or two.

    But in fairness, the festival did right by BLACK DYNAMITE – it was a gala show at a good venue, and there was a fun Q&A session. It was pretty much the jewel in the festival’s crown, and was treated as such by the media.

    Not sure what the judges were thinking. I know that there was one review that came out of the festival screening that was pretty lukewarm; the dude basically saw it as an AUSTIN POWERS movie. I also heard a lot of talk at the festival along the lines of “I hope we see something as good as LET THE RIGHT ONE IN.” The festival patted itself on the back quite a bit last year for recognizing LET THE RIGHT ONE IN (gold medal) a bit before the masses caught on. I figure the festival takes it upon itself to preach to the mainstream that these movies should be taken seriously, so maybe they thought they needed to get behind a “serious” genre film.

    Or maybe Toronto is just goofy for zombies; after all, we let them blow up our city hall in one of those RESIDENT EVIL movies.

  32. Hey Jareth, did the Q&A involve Michael Jai White coming out after the movie unannounced? That’s what they did at SIFF and it was great. Of course I was excited to see him there but this crowd was going nuts and I’m guessing most of them were not as familiar with UNDISPUTED II and EXIT WOUNDS as I am. But the guy is so awesome in BLACK DYNAMITE that to see him in person right afterwards is like Superman just flew in and pulled your cat out of a tree. And MJW was just beaming with pride, it was great to see him getting that respect after so many years on the fringe.

    By the way, Entertainment Weekly gave BLACK DYNAMITE an A and has a sidebar where MJW says he wants to bring back the good ol’ American action movie. As a former Entertainment Weekly sidebar myself I would like to offer my full support in this cause.

  33. Vern – The After Dark festival Q&A in Toronto only featured Scott Sanders, but the crowd responded well to him, and every mention of Michael Jai White’s name drew repeated bursts of applause, hoots, shouts, and one marriage proposal. The folks I talked to that night – and those I eavesdropped on – seemed most familiar with SPAWN, with a few UNDISPUTED II fans peppered throughout. The vast majority of the love for White was based solely on his performance in BLACK DYNAMITE.

    Having White attend Seattle’s event must have been great. These horror/niche film festivals draw such great crowds. In Toronto, all the After Dark shows begin at midnight, so only the faithful are willing to put in the effort.

    You know what sucks: some chump in an executive position is probably ambivalent about getting behind BLACK DYNAMITE because it doesn’t fit some marketing paradigm, or because some focus group in Boise, Idaho didn’t like it. The head honchos really need to see the grassroots response to a film like this. Without a doubt this will do better on dvd, and I have no doubt that it will outperform I’M GONNA GET YOU SUCKA, which I’m told made a healthy profit (eventually).

    There are some clips from the Toronto event at the following link:

  34. All right, after reading this and listening to that soundtrack link, I’ll trudge up to Times Square tomorrow since the damn Angelika already booted it.

    About BOONDOCK: I have a feeling that a lot of the hatred (maybe not here, but in general) for the movie is from a backlash against the director, who is a prick by everyone’s account, and against the fratboy crowd that made it popular. I’ll be honest, I enjoyed it. It was a fun little B movie that went over the top (witness Dafoe recreating the crime scene) but was never boring.

  35. Jareth – it was a midnight show in Seattle too (they might’ve had another one at a reasonable hour the next day). Sanders introduced the movie and said he would answer questions afterwards, so everyone waited until after the credits. But it was a total surprise when he called out for “Black Dynamite himself.”

    I agree, I think it will be huge on DVD, but it was so fun with a crowd it’s a shame if it doesn’t get more play in theaters. If it disappears right away we should petition for an awards season re-release.

    M. Casey – at the time I thought Boondock Saints was a self-conscious Guy Ritchie/Tarantino wannabe, but not the worst of its kind. THURSDAY starring Thomas Jane for example is more embarrassing. I think I had one or two nice things to say about Boondock Saints at the time, like I liked Willem Dafoe’s character being a gay badass if I remember correctly. So I think you’re right, when I saw OVERNIGHT and the director turned out to be even more of a douche than I suspected from the movie it sort of magnified my negative feelings about it.

    Around here it’s not frat boys that like it, it’s more like the same people who listen to evil clown rap I think. I’m always surprised when I see somebody wearing a Boondock Saints hoodie. But who was it here that really likes it? He mentioned an Irish heritage thing as being part of why people are so into it. Maybe that’s why I don’t get it.

    Anyway, didn’t mean to put a target on that movie, that just seemed like the kind of thing I would not want to watch again but would be willing to to support BLACK DYNAMITE.

  36. You know, Vern, enjoying a movie with an audience is one thing, but you’re right, there’s a special level of fun that can happen when the audience of like-minded people share a collective experience watching a film. In my movie-going life, very few events or films have provoked this kind of response. BLACK DYNAMITE was one of those events. TRAINSPOTTING, 15 or 16 years ago, was another. I’d have to go all the way back to Alex Cox’s STRAIGHT TO HELL in 1987 for another example, and Jarmusch’s DOWN BY LAW the year before. It’s not something I’ve ever seen reproduced in a home environment.

    I can only imagine what it must have been like for an audience sharing a group high after watching BLACK DYNAMITE to then be pushed even further into the moment by Mr. White’s surprise appearance. It’s a hell of a way to reward people who go out of their way to support less mainstream projects.

    The folks down in Texas are a bit spoiled with surprise guest appearances. I’m glad it still happens from time to time in other places.

    But at least the audience can often share a collective groan when a really bad trailer plays. I noticed that’s been happening a lot with this LEGION trailer.

    As for an awards season re-release: hey, they got all those new “best picture” slots to fill.

  37. RE: Boondock Saints, I don’t begrudge anyone for enjoying it (Lord knows I love a lot of questionable shit) but I can honestly say that my reasons for hating are related solely to the movie itself. I never saw Overnight, and I’m too old to know any fratboys or juggalos. The only person I know who likes it is the girl who showed it to me, and I definitely didn’t hate her that night, if you catch my drift.

    Am I a masochist because I kind of want to see the sequel for scientific purposes?

  38. I don’t even know who the director is or what he did, but I don’t like Boondock Saints plain and simple because it’s a bad movie, that was made to get money from infantile Tarantino Fanboys, who would watch every crazy gangster movie with gratious violence and senseless dialogue (but so were 99% of all gangster movies that came out after 1994, which is one of the reasons why I hate this subgenre so much).

  39. Vern, I was the guy who brought up the Irish heritage thing. I’m not really a big fan of Boondocks, but I thought it was OK and two of my brothers absolutely love it. I found out after watching it about the cult following and have since met a bunch of people who are obsessed with the thing, and wear T-shirts and sweatshirts and talk about getting the hand tatoos they have in that movie. At least here in Massachusetts, all these people fit the same profile: angry Irish teenaged/early twenties male. So that’s why I bring up the Irish thing.

  40. Jareth,

    I’ve met Maddin a few times actually. Super normal, softspoken guy.

    He used to do a local cable access show in the 80’s called Survival. He would warn viewers of the coming catyclysm.

    Here’s what he looked like:

    I don’t know what to say about his films other than “unique”

  41. Stuntcock Mike: I’m a big fan of Maddin but his films aren’t for everyone. I’m not even sure there’s a clear choice for an “entry” film into his work. Many SADDEST MUSIC IN THE WORLD.

    I saw him narrate BRAND UPON THE BRAIN a couple of years ago when he was touring it around with a live orchestra and foley artists. I briefly entertained the hope that the film might find its way into the heart of zombie movie fans; obviously that didn’t happen.

    I didn’t know about “Survival.” That link was a real treat; thanks for that.

  42. Jareth Cutestory:

    I don’t even know if I like his films. They are so different than anything I’ve ever seen. They are indeed art. I just don’t know if I like art or not.

    He should do Transformers 3.

    In newsreel black and white with Fritz Lang Metropolis-type models depicting L.A. Shia LaBone is in chalky white facepaint and he wears a doctors coat. replace Megan Fox with Isabella Rosselinni. The robots are puppets.



  43. i fucking WISH this played Toronto more than once.
    all i can offer is to blind buy the DVD eventually, but i doubt i’ll regret it.

  44. Being Irish is the closest thing to being black for angry white youth who don’t have good taste in music, so when a shitty movie about drunken, misogynist Boston Micks comes along that rips off all the parts of a Quentin Tarantino movie that are easy to rip off, you know they’re gonna eat that shit up, especially when it’s got a shitty penny-whistle soundtrack. I grew up in Butte MT, this small mining town that’s absurdly proud of it’s Irish heritage. The funny part is, back in the heyday, when it was the second biggest town west of the continental divide, it wasn’t just Irish. Every nationality had their own neighborhood, it’s just that all the non-Irish ones ended up being destroyed by the mine. There’s a giant pit of toxic waste where the Italians used to live. http://financasfaceis.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/butte_berkeleypit.jpg
    So yeah, everybody likes to pretend that they’re Irish and they eat up all that shit, Boondock Saints included. So, apart from the movie’s apparent shittiness, the Irish pride really gets to me. It’s not fucking Gangs of New York anymore guys. Get over it. You’re white.

  45. Wow. Didn’t see that coming.

  46. So I was walking around today, bumping the Black Dynamite soundtrack, when I came up with the perfect idea for a sequel. Just like in the Godzilla series, BD needs a nemesis who can fight him on his own terms. A few years after the events of the first film, superbadness has gone mainstream. A Caucasian funk-faking sucka has co-opted the the soul of the black community, Elvis-style, and is using it for evil. Only Black Dynamite can stop him.

    Nathan Fillian IS…White Chocolate.

    Can you dig it?

  47. Today Is Michael Jai White’s 42nd birthday!
    And the Black Dynamite soundtrack is seriously great!

  48. I saw this last Saturday in Atlanta. What impressed me most: Michael Jai White, the soundtrack, the serious action of the script and finally the art direction. The film stock looks so 70s, it’ll hypnotize you. I hope they make a sequel.

  49. You hear that, Vern? Your reviews aren’t just awesome badass scholarship – they’re also part of a balanced diet. Nine out of ten doctors agree.

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