Jivetime Jimmy’s Revenge

Hollywood Shuffle is an underrated satire that was way ahead of its time. Meteor Man himself Robert Townsend wrote, directed, produced, starred, and financed a lot of the movie himself. It’s all about how black actors tend to be depicted in Hollywood. Stereotypes ranging from playing a slave, a pimp, a butler, or a jive talking gang member. I’m surprised more people don’t talk about this movie. My mom recommended it and I’m glad she did. It’s a funny take on a relatable problem. Thanks to some influence from Keenen Ivory Wayans as a co-writer.

Bobby Taylor is an aspiring actor who auditions for the unfortunately titled movie Jivetime Jimmy’s Revenge. He tries to follow his dreams despite the obvious stereotypes expected from the predominantly white production crew. It’s especially funny seeing theatrically trained actors saying such ridiculously over-the-top lines. Bobby quits his job at a hot dog stand, but has plenty of support from his little brother, mom, and girlfriend. It’s mostly his grandmother who causes doubt for whether it’s right to degrade yourself for the sake of a job. It’s a simple message for a fairly straightforward 82 minute movie.

Honestly the movie would be about 50 minutes without the many hilarious daydream vignettes in between. I couldn’t stop laughing at the “Black Acting School,” the black version of At the Movies called “Sneaking into Movies” should be its own show, and the noir style short film Death of a Breakdancer felt very authentic. If the movie were made nowadays, it would be far too heavy handed. Hollywood Shuffle knows how to confront serious issues with a sense of humor.

Hollywood Shuffle

“Sneaking into the Movies”

4 thoughts on “Jivetime Jimmy’s Revenge

  1. I believe I’d heard of the title, just never saw the film itself. Robert Townsend is another of those underrated modern auteurs who mixed genre and personal storytelling well. Looks hilarious I have to say, I’ll definitely keep an eye out for when it’s on.

    Liked by 1 person

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