Uptight

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UptightJules Dassin, 1968, 94 min.

Uptight is an updated remake of John Ford’s 1935 film, The Informer. Dublin becomes the Cleveland ghetto and the Irish Republicans are replaced by black revolutionary fighters. Days after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Tank Williams (Julian Mayfield) is an unemployed and itinerant steelworker who turns over his militant friend, Johnny (Max Julien) to the police for the $1,000 reward, resulting in an underground all-points bulletin to exact vengeance on the squealer. Legendary director, Jules Dassin’s unrelenting directorial pace is complemented by the driving score of Booker T. Jones. The stellar cast includes Raymond St. Jacques, Ruby Dee, Roscoe Lee Browne, and Frank Silvera.

Presented by Lee Bey as part of our ongoing series The Black Cinema Is….
Lee Bey is an urban planning consultant, as well as a writer, lecturer, and critic specializing in architecture, urbanism, and the role politics play in the creation of the built environment. He writes an architectural photoblog called “Lee Bey’s Chicago” for WBEZ and was on-air architecture contributor for Fox News Chicago from 2010 to 2012.

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