I could've sworn I had already seen a documentary about the life and
times of Richard Pryor, but a friend recommended this one to me, and
judging by it's year of release (2013)- don't think I had already seen
this one..?? Well, anyway, I saw this one off Showtime the other night,
and it's a winner!
I would say all modern-day comedians can be traced back to Richard
Pryor- Louis CK, Chris Rock, Sarah Silverman, Steve Harvey, etc...in
the ability he opened up to pretty much test all the boundaries of an
audience, and WOW- did he test them! I'll occasionally go back and
watch some of his live shows and think to myself- hmmm.... I really
wonder if a comedian in the present day could get away with saying
something like that-??
This movie goes into Pryor's life and upbringing, basically in a
brothel where grandma was the madame, his dad was a pimp, and his mom
was a ho!- talk about "Father Knows Best"!?? LOL Well, it sorta gives
you an idea of where his roots shaped his sorta unconventional thinking
for the time. The film also goes into his struggle with drugs,
especially those incidents lived in the world-wide press. The first
movies I remember seeing of his when I was a kid were "Stir Crazy",
"The Toy", and "Bustin Loose"- where I recall him having a kinda weird,
scaly skin texture. At the time I didn't know that was from his face
being lit on fire from free basing cocaine!
Well, again, I'm sure there have been other docs. about this very
important comedian, actor, all-around entertainer, but this one has got
to rank up among the top. Thumbs up to a good film, and a life lived to
it's very fullest!
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