You can't call the 1975 blaxploitation film Dolemite a bad movie, in the same way you can't call the Charge of the Light Brigade a failed military engagement: By any sane definition it really absolutely is the worst one ever, but its level of failure so far transcends the original concepts involved it takes on immortality. It honestly might not be legal to make a film like this any more.
This of course is just all the more reason to examine it, as if it were one of the last, badly deformed specimens of an endangered species.
Based on the credits, incomparable expletivist Rudy Ray "Dolemite" Moore writes, produces, directs and stars in the film.
WARNING: Poster teaches at least two incorrect lessons about firearm safety.
Based on everything else we see on screen, he filled all positions he couldn't physically do himself with people he picked up off the street. Most of the "actors" look like they just regained the power of speech through experimental surgery, and the boom mic makes daring raids to claim scenes as part of the Gloriously Crappy Sound Man Empire.
While some cinematic experiments have been recorded in one take, Dolemite was written and produced in that take too. People arrive on screen with absolutely no idea of what they're supposed to be doing, many looking like the concept of "pretending to be someone else" is being explained off screen in sign language several seconds after the camera has started rolling. This is the only way to explain why a "Fuck you"/"No, Fuck YOU" exchange can take upwards of 20 seconds.
A scene from the trailer, featuring an apparently heavily sedated Rudy Ray Moore.
It's still a priceless window into the most motherfucking soul on the planet. The plot is Dolemite framed, Dolemite released, then badly-paced VENGEANCE. Even within such a complex plot they find time to reveal Rudy's opinions on:
Dolemite's first action on release from prison is to strip out of the square prison-issue clothes, with the entire male population of the prison watching, and get into pimp gear.
Tightey-whiteys: The only whiteys Dolemite will tolerate.
He then gets into a limo and starts taking his clothes off again for some reason. This is one of the many, many scenes that obviously seemed badass inside Rudy Ray's head and nowhere else, and that offer irrefutable proof that once Rudy screamed action, everyone else was too terrified to speak. One particularly curious decision that you'd think even the most cowardly Assistant Director would have raised his hand for: If I was portraying a badass ladies man his first action would not be "Performing strip-tease for a male convict population."
His adoring audience.