Jon’s review published on Letterboxd:
A movie full of swearing, nudity, dirty jokes and booze is the feel-good movie of the year. I know, weird times.
The story of Rudy Ray Moore is a really interesting one and apparently quite easy to give the routine Hollywood biopic formula to. What keeps things from being boring are the events that fit the mold of each story beat and the characters in them. Sure you have to show the first rise of the hero, but it's rare to see that first rise be a dude dressing like a pimp shout-rhyming euphemisms for getting laid. And all the characters trying to make their own name in the world that keeps closing doors on them is cute, but hilarious when their efforts are in the service of one of the most outlandish movies made at the time. The movie works entirely on the wildness of Dolemite and the people involved in making it.
The cast is wonderful wide range of performers, thriving off of a charisma Eddie Murphy hasn't shown in years. He's having the time of his life playing Moore, probably through a combination of being a genuine fan of him and relating to how he determined the fate of his own career. Murphy nails Moore's comedic attitude but also gets points for showing Moore as a down-and-out guy struggling to get his foot in the door.
Another comeback in addition to Murphy's is Wesley Snipes, whose drunken snobbery gets a lot of laughs. Craig Robinson finally gets something to match his relaxed cool, Tituss Burgess makes a nice foil for all the machismo from the rest of the cast and Da'Vine Joy Randolph makes a nice mirror for Moore to see himself in.
Great stuff all around, welcome back Mr. Murphy (and Mr. Snipes).