Jive Turkey — Where the 1970s become 1956.

Jive Turkey — Where the 1970s become 1956.


The blaxploitation film “Jive Turkey” has a few things going for it — suits made from carpet remnants, a transvestite who kills with her high heels — and a very curious problem with time.

Even though the soundtrack is 1970s, and the mannerisms, and the costumes, characters keep saying “Hey — it’s 1956!”


And the cars are from the 50s. We know this not just from the tail fins, but the repeated shots of license plates that clearly read “1956.”

I don’t know why this is. No clue.

Without this strange disturbance in the time/space continuum, “Jive Turkey” is a lightweight tale of an Italian mob guy trying to take over the numbers from Pasha, the local black kingpin.

Many people die, and it is occasionally relevant to the story.

Many people wear extraordinarily bad clothes, even for 1974, or 1956, or whatever.

We’re talking opium den, killer transvestite, hair goop, and what has to be improvised dialogue.


And let us not forget the toe-tapping anthem “Nigger Rich,” which would cause the Internet to explode if it were released today. Hell, it still might.

My copy is grainy and fizzy and blurry, as befits one of those “50 Horrible Flicks for $15” box sets.

Not much to recommend here, except as a historical curiosity.

Two coils.


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