MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -3

Panther traces the supposed history of the "Panther Party for Self-defense," better known as the Black Panthers. Organized in the 1960s, the Panthers began as a non-violent group promoting political activism and racial equality for blacks in California. But the group quickly turns violent as the local authorities begin to crack down on it. The two leaders of the movement are Huey Newton (Marcus Chong) and Bobby Seales (Tryin Turner). They grow from local to national celebrities as they spread the slogan "All Power to the People," which is apparently adapted from Communist literature. As the police become more violent in their response to the Panthers, another member, Judge (Kadeem Hardison), joins their ranks. The movie, however, quickly moves from fact to fantasy. It blames Hoover's F.B.I. for everything, from destroying the Panthers through covert means to causing the current drug epidemic by flooding the Panther's neighborhood with cocaine.

Another of Hollywood's attempt to re-write history, PANTHER portrays the two leaders, Huey and Bobby, as ready for sainthood. They are treated as heros, even though a brief reference is made to Huey getting killed in a drug deal. The film plays down any links of the group to the Communist party or violent activity. Nonetheless, one of its members, labeled a black sheep by the movie, takes a large group of Panthers and opens fire on the police. The group also passes out Communist propaganda, but supposedly only to make money to buy guns. The police and F.B.I. are depicted as bad and corrupt, with several newsreels of police brutality flashed across the screen. In addition, the movie adds bloody shootings and vicious clubbings by policemen. Huey is badly beaten and shot by a local policeman. A man suspected of spying on the Panthers is also beaten and one of his fingers broken. The language matches the violence with over 100 obscenities along with many crudities and profanities. The distortion of facts, plus offensive language and graphic violence should put Panther on the endangered movie list for discerning viewers.

Preview Reviewer: Greg Wilson
Gramercy, 9247 Alden Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (56) times - Mild 27, Moderate 29

Obscene Language: Many (121) times (f-word 76 times, s-word 39, others 6)

Profanity: Many (12) times - Regular 7 (G-d, G, J), Exclamatory 5

Violence: Many times - Moderate and severe (many clubbings by police; fist fights with punching and kicking; many bloody shootings; man's finger broken as punishment)

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Few times (references to intercourse)

Drugs: Alcohol drinking and drug dealing, not condoned

Other: Biased ideological account of Panthers as good and police as bad

Running Time:
Intended Audience: Adults

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