J.D.'s Revenge

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"He came back from the dead to possess a man's soul, make love to his woman, and get the Vengeance he craved!"
  • R
  • 1976
  • 1 hr 37 min
  • 6.0  (1,426)

In the 1976 film J.D.'s Revenge, Glynn Turman stars as Isaac Hendrix, a well-intentioned law student in the New Orleans of the 1940s. Isaac is a man of faith, devoted to both his studies and his fiancée, Christella (Joan Pringle). However, while out celebrating with his friends one night, Isaac unwittingly becomes the vessel for the revenge of J.D. Walker, a singer and small-time crook who was murdered by a gangster in the 1940s.

J.D. Walker is played by Louis Gossett Jr. in a role that showcases his range as an actor. Gossett is charismatic and chilling as J.D., who is introduced as a smooth-talking singer but soon reveals himself to be a violent, misogynistic criminal. After J.D. is killed, his spirit seeks vengeance on those responsible for his death, but he needs a body to inhabit. Through a series of terrifying flashbacks, Isaac gradually becomes possessed by J.D.'s spirit, and his behavior becomes increasingly erratic and violent. He begins to dress like J.D., talk like J.D., and even fight like J.D. Isaac's friends and loved ones are understandably concerned, but Isaac insists that he is in control of his actions.

The film spends a lot of time exploring the relationship between Isaac and Christella, who is initially supportive of Isaac but becomes increasingly alarmed by his behavior. The scenes between Turman and Pringle are some of the film's strongest, as they navigate the complex emotional terrain of their relationship. The film is also notable for the way it portrays New Orleans in the 1940s. Director Arthur Marks takes full advantage of the city's unique architecture and culture, with scenes set in jazz clubs, voodoo shops, and on the streets of the French Quarter.

Despite its supernatural elements, J.D.'s Revenge is ultimately a story about power dynamics and the ways in which individuals can be subjugated by forces beyond their control. J.D. is a victim of racism and poverty, and his murder is the direct result of his attempts to stand up to his oppressors. Isaac, on the other hand, is a highly-educated, middle-class African-American man who has been taught that hard work and a clean conscience are enough to succeed in life. When J.D.'s spirit takes over his body, Isaac is forced to confront the ways in which his own life has been shaped by systemic oppression.

The film was released in the wake of the blaxploitation boom of the 1970s, and it shares many of the genre's conventions and themes. However, J.D.'s Revenge stands out for its nuanced portrayal of its characters and its willingness to tackle difficult issues like racism and domestic violence. The screenplay, by Jaison Starkes, is tightly constructed and features a number of memorable lines and scenes. The film's score, by Robert Prince, is also noteworthy, incorporating elements of jazz, funk, and R&B.

While J.D.'s Revenge never became a massive box-office hit, it has since become a cult classic and is remembered as one of the best films of its era. It is a gripping, suspenseful movie that features strong performances from its entire cast. At its core, though, J.D.'s Revenge is a story about redemption and the power of love. Through his possession by J.D.'s spirit, Isaac is forced to confront the darkest parts of himself and ultimately emerges transformed. The film may be a product of its time, but its message about the need to confront systemic oppression and the importance of supporting marginalized communities is just as relevant today as it was in 1976.

J.D.'s Revenge is a 1976 horror movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 37 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.0.

J.D.'s Revenge
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 37 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.0  (1,426)