Three workers, Zeke, Jerry and Smokey, are working at a car plant and drinking their beers together. One night when they steal away from their wives to have some fun, they get the idea to rob the local union’s bureau safe.
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A cool little story about three hard working blue collar guys who bite off a little bit more than they can chew when they decide to hit a safe that belongs to their own workers union. Thoroughly enjoyed this one. Great performances from all the main actors, especially Pryor, such wit and furious energy. Great stuff!
Richard Pryor really should have done more dramatic roles during his lifetime as this film show how fantastic he could be playing emotional real-life working class characters. Yaphet Kotto and Harvey Keitel also deliver solid stuff in this excellent heist-gone-wrong movie that end up being really tense at the end as the robbers so discover that no one screws the union nor the system. A movie with substance.
Schrader wrote a great script, that´s his skill, but the acting makes the film so special : Keitel of course and Richard Pryor who is a true revelation to me. The life of the Union, backstage, corruption, rivalries, racial issues and industrial Detroit are accurately depicted. The social background changes "Blue Collar" into something else than another common crime story. Like Loach meets Scorsese or something.