Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling | Chicago Reader

Jo Jo Dancer, Your Life Is Calling

Richard Pryor delves into the deepest, darkest reaches of his soul and comes up with the plot of a Susan Hayward show-business tearjerker. There's no narrative logic to the scenes that Pryor chooses to dramatize from his life: significant passages (such as how Pryor discovered and polished his talent as a comic) are skipped over; trivial incidents are expanded to minutes of screen time, with no explanation of their obvious personal importance to the writer-director-star. What emerges from the fragmented structure is the sense of a wholly passive character, victimized first by the Freudian excesses of his childhood and later by the hangers-on (wives and drug dealers) attracted by his success. The relentless externalizing of “evil forces” is pure MGM melodramatic hokum; there is much more truth, texture, and self-analysis in any random Pryor monologue, including the one he performs at the end of this film. Carmen McRae, Diahnne Abbott, Debbie Allen, Scoey Mitchlll, and Paula Kelly costar.


Cast information not available at this time.

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