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Film / East Meets Watts

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East Meets Watts (also released as Dynamite Brothers) is a 1974 film directed by Al Adamson.

Larry Chin has sneaked into the United States via the port of San Francisco to search for his brother, who disappeared some time before. He crosses paths with Stud Brown, and they combine their efforts to intervene in a gang war, stop a flood of drugs into the ghetto (the Watts area of Los Angeles), keep one step ahead of a corrupt cop and find Larry's brother. The film combines elements of Blaxploitation and Martial Arts Movie styles.

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Cinematic Titanic riffed on the film for several live shows, one of which was released on DVD.


This film provides examples of:

  • And I Must Scream: A particularly twisted version as Razor tortures the mute Sarah to death.
  • Chained Heat: Larry and Stud spend part of the film handcuffed to each other.
    • At one point, Larry somehow easily takes off his jacket despite still being handcuffed to Stud.
  • Cute Mute: Sarah.
  • Deliberately Monochrome: Larry's flashbacks to the death of his wife are tinted in red.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Larry's cousin is killed in a car bomb a few minutes after giving Larry an address to find his brother.
  • Dirty Cop: Burke.
  • Hitchhiker Heroes: Larry and Stud flag down Betty Fon, who drives them to Los Angeles. She later assists Larry in trying to find his brother.
  • Kung-Foley: Lots of it.
    Mary Jo Pehl: It sounds like they're hitting each other with bags of groceries.
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  • Large Ham: Smiling Man, an unusually badass example.
  • Literal Cliffhanger: The climactic fight between Larry and Wei while both are driving on a mountainous road.
  • Mr. Exposition: The conversation between Wei and Razor at the start of the film establishes the basic plot, as they touch on Larry, the drugs, Burke and Smiling Man.
  • Never Hurt an Innocent: Averted; Razor kills both Sarah and Burke's girlfriend.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Burke hurls a few racial slurs along the way, which sound even more crude and jarring now than when the film was first released.
  • The '70s: Oh, so much.
  • Snake Pit: Kung Fat and his henchmen throw Larry into a stone pit, then throw a single snake in after him.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: Stud empties a six-shot rifle into Razor.
  • Tragic Villain: The film takes a stab at portraying Burke as one, showing him begging Wei for more bribe money and having him express his unhappiness with the position he has put himself in:
    Burke: You know, sometimes I think I'm crazy, but I used to be a good cop. I really was. What am I now? Nothing, that's what. I could've been different. But oh, no, I had to make it big. Lots of money, the works. What am I, just a dirty cop? ... Ah, the hell with it. I'm stuck. And what's worse is, I like it. I like the dirt and the and the clout goes with it. Who the hell am I kidding?
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