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From the Vault: Let’s Do It Again (1975)

August 6, 2010

Cast: Sidney Poitier, Bill Cosby, John Amos, Jimmie Walker, Ossie Davis, Denise Nicholas, Lee Chamberlin, Mel Stewart
Director: Sidney Poitier
Genre: Comedy

Technically speaking, Let’s Do It Again is not a sequel to Uptown Saturday Night, but it does reunite Cosby and Poitier, who once again play working class married guys who find themselves at the center of a scheme to community landmark – in this case a fraternal lodge called the Brothers and Sisters of Shaka – from getting bulldozed, foreclosed or gentrified.

Clyde Williams (Poitier) and Billy Foster (Cosby) pledge to raise $20K for their beleaguered organization, except well, they don’t have it. Naturally, they hatch an elaborate scheme involving hypnotism and a cheesy boxer (played by Jimmy “Dy-no-mite” Walker) and a rigged boxing match. As with nearly all films utilizing the “save the community center” trope there are subplots, plot twists and reversals of fortunes before our anti-heroes realize their goal. Cosby and Poitier (who proves adept at directing comedic performances) have great chemistry in this marginally serviceable plot, which is as patchy as a baby doll’s scalp. Fortunately, the plot doesn’t need to be particularly complex because the performances are memorable and the lulz abound! Scene stealers include: Calvin Lockhart who plays a character named – wait for it – Biggie Smalls (yes, that’s where the late rapper took his moniker), who proves an endless fly in the ointment or pain in the ass, which ever you prefer. Also on board are the great Ossie Davis and the terminally 40 year old looking John “James Evans” Amos, who seems blissfully unaware he’s acting in close proximity to his TV son, J.J.

And all that’s wonderful, but the real show stopper is the Curtis Mayfield written and produced soundtrack featuring the spectacular theme by The Staples Singers:

The film also boasts a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo by the one, the only, Ms. Jayne Kennedy!

Let’s Do It Again is available on Netflix Instant View and is WELL worth a watch!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. August 7, 2010 2:50 pm

    I remember Channel 11 would run these late at night years ago, along with Cooley High and Car Wash as others in the series of films with ensemble casts.

    But speaking specifically to this film, the point was certainly to exploit the superstardom of Jimmie Walker at the time and the ridiculousness of him being a prizefighter (I guess the last least likely actor in such a position was Danny Kaye in “The Kid From Brooklyn”). It’s so good-natured and silly that it works beautifully.

    I really do wish that Poitier had gotten more opportunities to direct, back in the day… he would have shown Spike Lee a thing or two about how to handle comedy!

  2. evmaroon permalink
    August 7, 2010 3:15 pm

    Once again IFMiB motivates me to rearrange my Netflix queue. My favorite Poitier-directed movie, by far, is Stir Crazy, because there wasn’t quite the duo like Wilder and Pryor, plus hello, fugitive storyline! Best!!

  3. August 8, 2010 9:20 am

    This movie is somewhere in the library of VHSes that my psuedo-in-laws have, so I reckon it’s high time I bring it out and watch it!

  4. Le Watcher permalink
    August 12, 2010 1:53 pm

    “Have Hammer Will Travel Deep Into Your Crevice”— i love this movie!! and the back story behind what Sidney and Cosby were trying to do with United Artist…

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