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Ivanhoe Martin (Jimmy Cliff) arrives in Kingston, Jamaica, looking for work and, after some initial struggles, lands a recording contract as a reggae singer. Wishing to become successful, Ivanhoe finds himself tied to corrupt record producers and drug pushers.
Perry Henzell's 1972 rugged reggae crime story--loosely based on a '40s-era Jamaican folk hero/criminal--plays like a musically-inspired docudrama of the raw social reality of the impoverished island nation in the '70s.
Perry Henzell emerges a director with a solid visual flair who can mix action and inchoate rage sans excess to give the film a taut pacing and use the local color and a basically predictable tale with a few new twists.