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Superfly (1972)

Commentaries on this disc:

Commentary 1: Dr. Todd Boyd, professor of cinema and television, and author of "Am I Black Enough for You: Popular Culture from the 'Hood and Beyond" Rating:3.7/10 (7 votes) [graph]Login to vote or review
Reviewed by Brian Thibodeau on July 19th, 2004:Find all reviews by Brian Thibodeau
Here’s what “noted” author and professor Dr. Todd Boyd thinks about the seminal black exploitation film Superfly: “Superfly is da shit, without question.”

Boyd’s lethargic street affectations quickly grow tiresome on this uninformative track, as does his need to punctuate every statement with “You know.” As seen in the far-more informative documentary included on the disc (informative due to everyone BUT him), Boyd comes off as the LEAST qualified or erudite candidate to voice a commentary for this film, bedecked as he is in big sunglasses, chains and a loud b-ball jersey, whilst EVERYONE ELSE, from writer Philip Fenty to professor/historian Armond White, comes off well-spoken and casually dressed. Why ANY of these other participants weren't included in an audio commentary is a real puzzle.

As it is, Boyd's track is prone to near-constant narration in which he feels the need to address only the most obvious of themes and, most disturbingly, speak FOR the characters on screen, as if that helps put the action in to some kind of context. His background on Blaxploitation films extends no further back than the 1971 film SHAFT, and no further ahead than this film, which was made in 1972! No mention of the sequel, if he even knows it exists, or the entire catalogue of films in the genre at the time. Occasionally, he’s given to repeating the lyrics of Curtis Mayfield’s brilliant songs not only as if they’re deeply philosophical, but also in case we’re too clueless to catch their significance. Then again, could we expect much better from a man who calls Bruce Lee a “third world icon” and finds strong comparison twixt this film and the “early, edgy” records of the Wu Tang Clan?

And then there’s his ridiculous signoff:

“In closing once again, the good doctor, Doctor B, the Notorious DOC, the Notorious PHD, the man himself Dr. Todd Boyd, author, professor, media comentator, consultant, lecturer, pimp, mack, hustler, whose shit like Priest is always on point, baby. Don’t forget it. Peace.”

Please forget it.
Reviewed by badge on November 13th, 2015:Find all reviews by badge
"Rollin down da streets of New York, his whip (?) is tight, his gear is tight, his situation in da bedroom is tight, and den, boom, Superfly, he's Superfly, he's so fly it's beyond, like, flyness, you know, which is about being cool and hip, is beyond sorta average everyday flyness, he's Superfly, he's, like, you know, just cool beyond, like, definition."
Similarly enlightened critique ensues for the next hour and a half, but I expect people can make much better use of their time.