Entertainer [1960]

Comedian Cedric the Entertainer (The Original Kings of Comedy, Barbershop) uses his considerable appeal to introduce some up-and-coming young standup comedians by hosting Cedric the Entertainer's Starting Lineup. Fortunately for Cedric's fans, he does a good chunk of comedy himself, affably riffing on Bill Clinton, the death penalty, reality television, fast-food chicken, church etiquette, and much more. The other comedians are a mixed lot: Roland Powell amusingly mocks insecure boyfriends and sings a singles bar pick-up song and Juan Villareal gets some laughs out of food stamps and The Blair Witch Project, while Tony Luewellyn flounders through weak material about Ex-Lax and the war on terror. Only J.J., who wears a vivid red leather suit, has a fully developed comic style, which gives a surreal spin to roadkill and giving birth to septuplets. Aside from Luewellyn, it's a pretty solid hour of comedy. --Bret Fetzer

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