Dead Presidents the movie was different, but amazing! THE HUGHES Siblings, twin brothers who broke through with “Menace II Society,” tackle everything from the Vietnam War to drugs in the ghetto in the sweeping epic. Like in “Menace II Society,” the two find little reason for hope when it comes to black life in America.
It starts in 1968 in the Bronx, where Anthony (Larenz Tate) and his classmates had just graduated from high school. Anthony has been performing odd tasks and running numbers for his friend Kirby (Keith David), who runs the neighborhood’s illegal commerce out of his pool hall. Anthony’s mother, on the other hand, has been pressuring him to follow in the footsteps of his older brother and attend college.
He takes the Marines for a stint in Vietnam because he wants to see the earth. If the attack on Anthony’s moral roots began on the streets of New York, the war will bring them to an end. Anthony sees humanity at its lowest ebb in the forest, and his survival plan is to shut out his human side.
Anthony does not get politicized against the power system that initiated what Vietcong propaganda refers to as “a white man’s war” while in the nation. When Anthony returns to the Bronx, however, he will find few opportunities. He finally gets work as a meat cutter, but his pay is barely enough to get by with one child by his girlfriend, Juanita (Rose Jackson), and another on the way.
If that wasn’t enough, the dulcet-voiced pimp (Clifton Powell), who had been looking after Juanita while he was in the military, has been prowling around again, insinuating that Anthony isn’t a man enough to feed his family.
When Anthony quits his job, he’s already planning to rob a Federal Reserve truck carrying millions of dollars in outdated paper money the state is retiring. The bills are known as “dead presidents,” and Anthony enlists the help of Kirby, his old group buddies Skip (Chris Tucker), Jose (Freddy Rodriguez), and Cleon (Bokeem Woodbine), as well as Juanita’s sister, Delilah (N’Bushe Wright), who decided to join the Black Panthers while he was away, to free a truckload of them.
It’s not at all surprising when Anthony’s painstakingly devised plot to flip the truck goes horribly wrong. In fact, even the tiniest ray of hope would require the Hughes brothers to radically flip their pessimistic, fundamentally nihilistic outlook on life.
They apprehend Kirby and Anthony as they prepare to leave for Mexico at Kirby’s pool hall. Anthony is tried, convicted, and condemned to fifteen years to life in jail, and the film ends with him on his way to prison on a bus.
- It’s a War Film:
Dead Presidents is a war film, a coming-of-age story, and a heist film all rolled into one, released in October 1995 between the revelation of O.J. Simpson’s not convicted judgment and the first Million Man March.
- Based on a true story:
Dead Presidents is based in part on the actual tale of Haywood T. Kirkland (aka Ari S. Merretazon), who was profiled in Wallace Terry’s book Bloods: An Oral History of the Vietnam War by Black Veterans.
- Its poster is phenomenal:
The posters for the film include stunning visuals. Faces veiled by the classic black and white paint loom above the headline and slogan (“The Only Color That Counts is Green.”) This alludes to the main characters’ transition into battle dead. This poster was the main theme of Halloween for many years.
Why watch ‘’dead presidents’’:
This masterpiece is not to be missed and here is why:
Represents the true events of War:
Dead Presidents is a movie with lots of drama and action, it is criminal drama containing explicit language, violence, and narcotics about a Vietnam veteran’s exploits during and after the war. so if you want to get a grasp of the Vietnam war, then this movie is a must watch.
The Hughes brothers’ ambitious follow-up to Menace II Society, tries to depict the ripple impact of the Vietnam War’s harm. Anthony Curtis, a young soldier, comes from the war-scarred, desensitized, and unable to live with the environment he returns to in Dead Presidents. The film’s early scenes, in which Anthony flirts with a life of crime before deciding to join the war effort, are among its best. Tate gives a well-balanced portrayal, gradually revealing Anthony’s innocence as his tours of duty in Vietnam sear indelible scars onto his brain.