I honestly hope that Louie, the TV series, gets renewed for season 6! Louie C.K is responsible for this insanely funny TV series, and even though it is wildly disturbing at times, I love it to bits! If you’ve experienced the Louie C.K humour, then you know that his humour is very unique. So, Pootie Tang. Scott Niehus recommended this film to me, and let’s just say, there is a lot to talk about!
Louie C.K started his comedic career as a writer. His writing included segments for Late Night with Conan O’brien and even The Late Show with David Letterman in the mid 90’s. In 1998 he made a film entitled Tomorrow Night, which remained un-released for years, until Louie re-released it himself, and it’s available for $5 on his website. Meanwhile he wrote for The Chris Rock Show. It was during this show that the character Pootie Tang was created. Pootie Tang had 2 appearances in The Chris Rock Show, almost immediately creating a small but substantial following.
We fast-forward a bit and Pootie Tang gets a harsh review from the one and only Roger Ebert, basically saying that the film is the worst thing he has ever seen, and that he did not know how this “train-wreck” ever got produced! “Mighty Strong Words McFly!” Let’s face it, critics have a lot of power, and Pootie Tang was destroyed by critics. I encourage you to read the review by Roger Ebert, it’s a good read! He gives it a half star…
I watched the film, and I couldn’t help but laugh, it’s actually a really funny film. It’s silliness is contagious, and a great soundtrack also comes to it’s rescue. The story seems a little misguided, and at times it feels like there is no real direction, but it doesn’t matter because Pootie Tang will say something that makes no sense at all, and it will make you laugh! The film has comedic value, and is also similar to The Harder They Come in it’s soundtrack iconicity. Movie and Music married together almost perfectly. I enjoyed this film, and you will catch me saying, “Sa Da Tay”, which basically means, “yeah!” Plus this film contains one of the funniest western inspired shots.
It got me curious, what happened? Louie C.K is a great writer. He has proven himself an amazing director and editor for his show, so what happened with Pootie Tang? The film does have a substantial cult following, which is not surprising, and I am keen to join, but there has to be more to this story. Turns out that Louie C.K presented a version of the film to Paramount, which they did not like, so they got another cut of the film done, which was also scrapped. Louie C.K was eventually fired from the project, even though he is still credited for the film. The president of Paramount, at the time, said that Louie has wasted the producers money, and that the film was worthless!
The final product that we see is not what Louie intended it to be, but rather a rescue mission, a salvaging of pieces, to be able to recover the money presumably ‘wasted’ by Louie. Louie explains in some interviews, that this hurt his career, but he also sees this happening as a good thing. I see it as a good thing too. What if Pootie Tang had been a cinematic success? The space time continuum would have been altered, and Louie C.K would be directing big budget films, maybe The Avengers 7 or Spiderman 23, who knows! His TV show Louie, would not be! Although it “tainted” his career, it was for the better, and Louie has garnished us with amazing Stand Up Comedy, and his multi award winning show, Louie.
Pootie Tang is a blessing in disguise, ask Louie. The film is really dumb and non-sensical, but thats ok, because sometimes there is no need to be serious, sometimes the best thing we can do is laugh. Thanks goodness for comedians, thanks goodness for Louie C.K! Oh, and did I say, Wanda Sykes is ultra funny in this film!?
TRIVIA COOKIES: Louie C.K used to amuse himself as a kid by talking nonsense phrases. Pootie Tang’s language comes from this.
Louie C.K will be involved in a TV series entitled Baskets, also a TV series called Better Things, with Pamela Aldon. He will also be directing a film entitled I’m a Cop. Exciting!
This was something that shocked me! The Matrix Reloaded drew inspiration from Pootie Tang, with the Burly Brawl scene. Towards the end of the film Pootie Tang fights other Pootie Tang impersonators, and interestingly enough the scene was virtually recreated in the scene where Neo fights cloned versions of Agent Smith. Camera angles are very similar and there are even similarities in the fight sequences!