The Harder They Come
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Reggae legend Jimmy Cliff stars as Ivan Martin, an aspiring young singer who leaves his rural village for the capital city of Kingston, Jamaica hoping to make a name for himself. Robbed of his money and possessions his first day in town, he finds work with a self-righteous, bullying preacher and an unscrupulous music mogul who exploits na´ve hopefuls. In desperation the simple country boy turns outlaw, at war with both the police and his rivals in the ganja trade. Ivan's dream of stardom soon becomes a reality as he rises to the top of the pop charts and the most-wanted lists. This gritty,… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 81%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Atrocious acting, amateurish camerawork and a hackneyed story line all make for one painful slog."
‑ Stephen Garrett, Time Out New York
"Packed with indelible images and potent subtexts (and great songs), this isn't just another bridge between Godard and MTV."
‑ Rob Nelson, City Pages, Minneapolis/St. Paul
"a hard-hitting social drama with revolutionary political overtones, but it is immensely enjoyable and, at times, light-hearted"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"The definitive postcolonial cult-movie musical."
‑ Melissa Anderson, Village Voice
"OK story, fabulous music by Jimmy Cliff"
‑ Lori Hoffman, Atlantic City Weekly
"The real reason to see The Harder They Come in the first place, even if the film is surprisingly good, is the music."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"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."
‑ Cole Smithey, ColeSmithey.com
"Entertaining if not incredibly professional."
‑ Michael W. Phillips, Jr., Goatdog's Movies
More reviews for The Harder They Come on Rotten Tomatoes