John D.F. Black
Action, crime, Drama
November 1, 1972 (1972-11-01)
blaxploitation film, Drama, Action Film, Crime Fiction, Adventure Film, Action/Adventure
The Black Gestapo, The Black Godfather, Black Gunn
Trouble man 1972 trailer
Trouble Man is a 1972 Soul Cinema Classic film produced and released by 20th Century-Fox. The film stars Robert Hooks as "Mr. T.", a hard-edged private detective who tends to take justice into his own hands. It is still of note today for its soundtrack, written, produced and performed by Motown artist Marvin Gaye.
An inner-city point man is on the run from both the cops and the crooks in this streetwise drama. T (Robert Hooks) is a combination pool shark, private detective, and all-purpose ghetto fixer who operates out of a billiards parlor in South Central Los Angeles. T has done well for himself—he buys a fancy new car every year, wears expensive suits, and lives in an upscale apartment. But, he also looks out for folks in South Central, has lukewarm connections with both the police and gangsters, and generally knows how to tell the good guys from the bad guys on either side of the law. T is approached by Chalky (Paul Winfield) and his partner, Pete (Ralph Waite), who run floating dice games in the neighborhood. Chalky tells T they've been ripped off several times by a group of four robbers, and they want to hire him to find out who the masked stick-up men are.
T takes it as a routine assignment and is willing to do the job for the right price. What he doesn't know is that Chalky and Pete are trying to take down rival crime kingpin Big (Julius Harris). They frame T for the killing of one of Big's underlings who is shot by Chalky moments after a dice game is robbed by four men (T was present at the hold-up). An anonymous informant fingers T for the killing and makes him the target for Big and for LAPD captain Joe Marx (Bill Smithers), who dislikes T on principle. That sets off a series of cunning twists and confrontations that T is determined to survive.
The film was featured in the 1978 Harry Medved book, The Fifty Worst Films of All Time. In contrast, Complex included Trouble Man on its 2009 list of "The 50 Best Blaxploitation Movies of All Time".
Jimi Izrael of NPR called Trouble Man "a strong film" but one that "never had an entry point for mainstream audiences to grasp."
ReferencesTrouble Man (film) Wikipedia
Trouble Man (film) IMDb Trouble Man (film) themoviedb.org