Dead Presidents by Albert Hughes and Allen Hughes
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Dead Presidents by Albert Hughes and Allen Hughes

From its opening sequence when Stevie Wonder’s “I Was Made to Love Her” plays while Anthony Curtis (Larenz Tate) announces he’s joining the Marines, the integral role the soundtrack plays in Albert Hughes and Allen Hughes’s Dead Presidents is clear. The follow-up to their debut feature, Menace II Society, Dead Presidents centers on a group of friends as they move through their horrific experiences in Vietnam and the turbulent lives upon returning to the Bronx after the war. Based partly on the real-life experiences of Haywood T. Kirkland (aka Ari S. Merretazon), whose true story was detailed in the book Bloods: An Oral History of the Vietnam War by Black Veterans by Wallace Terry, the film is driven by soul and funk music from the 1970s, including Barry White, Curtis Mayfield, Aretha Franklin, and more. 1995, USA, Digital, 119 min.

Content note: This film contains graphic scenes of violence, sexual violence, war trauma, drug abuse, and explicit language.

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