Dolemite Is My Name is up for two Golden Globes — one for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and another for Eddie Murphy for Best Actor – Musical or Comedy.
Netflix’s new movie, Dolemite Is My Name, is a biography, drama, and comedy directed by Craig Brewer and written by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski. It stars Eddie Murphy, Keegan-Michael Key, Mike Epp, and Craig Robinson. There are also appearances from Wesley Snipes, Snoop Dogg, T.I., and Chris Rock.
As the lead, Murphy portrays real-life legend Rudy Ray Moore. Moore was a versatile performer in the 1960s and 70s; he was a comedian, musician, singer, film actor, and film producer. In the 1970s, he created the character of Dolemite the Pimp, who went on to become a massive feature of the Blaxploitation era.
The movie follows the true story of Moore’s exploits in the late 60s and 70s. Moore’s career was flagging in the late 1960s, so he revitalized it by creating Dolemite, a character based on old African American folklore. The outrageously foul-mouthed Dolemite was typical of the anti-hero characters that were craved in this era.
In the movie, we see Murphy as Moore gradually building his character in front of a mirror; the garish costume includes afro wig, pink ruffled shirt, and elegant walking stick. The stereotypical image of a 1970s pimp is created.
While popular in club circuits, Moore’s character is shunned by record labels for being too obscene. However, he begins to build a following of dedicated fans and crucially develops a showbiz family around himself.
After the success of movies like Shaft, we see Moore doing all he can to bring Dolomite to the big screen.
Moore convinced a playwright to pen a movie with an outlandish plot full of “titties and Kung-fu” and then convinced D’Urville Martin to direct it. He achieves success in 1975 when Dolemite is released. Murphy and company bring this story to life.
Dolemite Is My Name is currently available to stream on Netflix.