You can say this much for POOTIE TANG, written and directed by Louis C.K.,
it isn't pretentious. Pootie Tang (Lance Crouther) is a crime fighter
rather in the spirit of AUSTIN POWERS but with an extra dose of silliness
and set in a black ghetto rather than in swinging London. The jokes, while
always outrageous, are rarely funny. Its humor tires not too long after the
beginning credits have finished rolling.
Typical of the level of the comedy is the way that Pootie's father, known as
Daddy Tang (Chris Rock), dies. Daddy Tang, we are told, is "only" the third
employee to have been mauled to death by a gorilla at the steel mill where
About the only funny bit occurs when Dirty D. (Reg E. Cathey) arrives on the
scene. Driving a big Cadillac that looks like it has just been through a
mud storm, Dirty D. is exactly like his name, right now to a fur coat
covered in dirt. When he raises his arms, dust fills the air like the fog
rolling in off the ocean. He's a bad dude, but no match for superhero
Pootie Tang, who can dodge a hail of bullets with his dance-like
Like a biography, we flashback to see Pootie when he was a 6-year-old boy.
Swaggering through the neighborhood in his fur coat, leather pants and
sunglasses, he attracts the local women like flies to honey, even if they're
a couple of decades older.
Much of the movie concerns Pootie's war with the evil Dick Lecter (Robert
Vaughn) who runs a large conglomerate. When Pootie's PSAs (Public Service
Announcements) encouraging healthy lifestyles cause the sales of Lecter
Burgers, Lecter Cigarettes and Lecter Whiskey to plummet, the battle begins.
By this time, however, you will have long since lost any interest in the
POOTIE TANG runs 1:20. It is rated PG-13 for sex-related material, language
and drug content and would be acceptable for teenagers.
Copyright © 2001 Steve Rhodes