The mission of The Department of Afro-American Research Arts and Culture is to identify the global significance of the creative contributions pioneered by an international diaspora of Afro-Americans.

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Watermelon Man (1970)


  • Godfrey Cambridge
  • Estelle Parsons
"Watermelon Man" might throw off quite a few people with its style of cinema. It's a work of the grandfather of American independent film, Melvin Van Peebles, and with that should come a certain measure of respect. Van Peebles may not have produced dozens of films, but he certainly turned the industry on its head 30 years ago. This is an interesting arrangement on the business side- hot off the European success of "The Story Of A Three Day Pass", Warner Brothers takes on filmmaker Van Peebles for a feature film. The story of Van Peebles versus the company in filming is a conte in itself, but the film remains poignant and striking in its cinematography and theme. Aggressive editing of both film and musical inserts highlight the subtle comedy and pure desperation of the story of a bigot who wakes up Black and watches the world turn against him.

Link to soundtrack review
Melvin Van Peebles - The Watermelon Man (1970)


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