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    Doctor Detroit Collector’s Edition

           review by Bobby Blakey

There are movie that sadly didn’t do as well as they had hoped on release that found a cult following much later. One of those movies is the 1983 comedy Doctor Detroit starring Dan Akroyd, Howard Hessman, Fran Drescher, Donna Dixon, Lynn Whitfield, T.K. Carter, and Lydia Lei. Now Shout Factory is bringing it home through their Shout Select line.

Doctor Detroit follows fast-talking pimp Smooth Walker, who finds himself in hot water with Chicago crime boss Mom forcing him to claim that there’s a new player in the game: Doctor Detroit, a cat who’s badder than bad and completely fictitious. In need of a patsy until the heat dies down, Smooth hits pay dirt with mild-mannered professor Clifford Skridlow and promptly skips town, leaving his bevy of sexy “employees” in Clifford’s hapless hands. Charmed by the ladies and spurred by his dedication to chivalry, Clifford agrees to become their protector and ally, transforming himself from a power-walking professor to a heroic hustler … and throwing down the gauntlet to save his college from financial ruin and the four damsels from the wrath of Mom! If you think the premise to this film sounds silly you are absolutely correct and that is why it works. This film came out during a trend of films showcasing shy nerdy types getting thrust into the world of pimping with often times hilarious results, but this one stood out adding an element that feels right out of a comic book.

I loved this movie as a kid and remember watching it every time it came on complete with an impression of him I still do to this day. Everything about this film screams the 80s and is a perfect showcase of Akroyd’s ability to carry a film. Sadly the film didn’t get the recognition it deserved, but seeing it get the chance to be found by a new generation makes me happy. The secret persona and look of Detroit himself is iconic while being so simple. I remember being so bummed that the announced sequel never got made, but glad that we still have the original in this latest edition to relive the fun of it all.

Featuring a great cast and an appearance by the iconic James Brown, Doctor Detroit is comedy gold and easily one my favorites of all time. I am not sure what connected me to it and of course it feels dated, but quickly sucks you right into the fun and laughs without much effort. In addition to the film this release this Blu-ray offers up plenty of bonus content including a photo gallery, theatrical trailers, TV spots, radio spots, vintage interviews, new commentaries and a new interview with director Michael Pressman.

Grab your copy of this cult comedy classic when Doctor Detroit hits Blu-ray for the first time on April 24th from Shout Factory.

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