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Together Brothers/Review

From The Grindhouse Cinema Database

< Together Brothers
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This Galveston, Texas-shot Blaxploitation entry contains a little bit of everything. Ed Bernard plays “Mr. Kool”—the neighborhood cop with a heart. Everyone respects righteous Kool so who in the world would gun him down, strip him to the waist, and leave him in a tenement doorway?

A winsome, big-eyed fatherless little boy named Tommy (Anthony Wilson) knows who. He witnessed the murder and is now in a state of silent (mute) shock. Perhaps he’ll “come to” and reveal the killer.

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Engaging photography (who is wearing those cowboy boots that keep walking in and out of frame?), a resolute script (life in Galveston is ragged, hot and boring), and well cast (child actor Wilson is as comfortable and convincing cowering in a corner as he is playing with the well-meaning adolescents and adults in his life).

This movie-with-a-message—both the African American and Hispanic communities come “together” (hence the film title) to search for Kool’s killer, Together Brothers is further enlivened by a little-known Barry White and Love Unlimited Orchestra soundtrack—“Somebody’s Gonna’ Off the Man” and “Theme From Together Brothers” are classic White.

Add a collection of colorful characters that include an African American, white-afroed (and hairy-chested!) cross-dresser, a swarthy Latin gang leader, a female church minister, a teenage sleuth, and a psychotic baby doll-carrying man on the run, and you’ve got a back-cast whodunit that more than delivers the goods.

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Josiah Howard is the author of four books including the seminal Blaxploitation Cinema: The Essential Reference Guide. His writing credits include articles for The New York Times, Reader’s Digest and The Village Voice. A veteran of more than 100 radio broadcasts he is a regular contributor to Grindhouse Cinema Database and in 2014-15 made regular appearances on TV One’s award-winning documentary series Unsung. Visit his Official Website.
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