By Ernest Dickerson

Not A Whole Lot To Chew On
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Take blaxploitation star Pam Grier who’s large cult-like following is a sure bet; have the movie directed by Ernest Dickerson, who also happens to be one of Hollywood’s most talented cinematographers (he D.P.’ed Spike Lee’s first five films); add Snoop Doggy Dogg in the lead role, which might not mean great acting but should make for a pretty good score; give it a consciousness raising, coming-of-age plot with a little horror twist and you’ve got Hollywood’s new ready made, Halloween week-end R-rated 12 to 65 audience magnet. Or in this particular instance, a pretty sad case of formulaic nonsense. The film is particularly horrific in its predictability, as a small group of suburban high school graduates trying to make it big decide to open a club in an abandoned house located in the ‘hood their parents fled. They disregard warnings that the house is haunted, having a good scare and then a good laugh each time they encounter another ominous sign of their much announced fate. We wish we could laugh with them, but as the film goes on, more than anything we wish we could be scared with them. Bones is a series of revengeful acts perpetrated by its eponymous character, or the black dog(g) it reincarnates into at night. He is actually a former drug lord still seeking afterlife peace, a number of decades after having been despicably murdered by his business partners and best friends. Jimmy Bones, a drug dealer with a heart, would not let them introduce crack cocaine in the neighborhood. But the generous thug’s scrupulous sense of ethics is unfortunately repeatedly lost in rather incongruous maimings and murders of whoever happens to be in his way, making for generous flows of thick, tomato sauce-like blood truly unique to this production.
Bones is a fine-tuned marketing product with a flaw, as blaxploitation actors try to school the new kids to the art of B movies, with Snoop Dogg as the bridge that can bring the generations together, but he simply never does. But for all you Pam Grier fans, the best part of it is definitely that the 52-year-old actress gets to be 30-year-old Snoop Dogg’s love interest, and is entirely convincing at it. In the flashback sequences, it is as if wearing an afro and bell bottoms immediately make her lose 20 years. Or maybe it’s that she doesn’t need to lose them at all.

Bones (2001). Directed by Ernest Dickerson. Starring Snoop Doggy Dogg (Jimmy Bones), Pam Grier (Pearl), Michael T. Weiss (Lupowitz), Clifton Powell (Jeremiah Peet), Khalil Kain (Patrick). Cinematography: Ernest Dickerson. A New Line Cinema Production.///Article N° : 5594

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