The Harder They Come
Director: Perry Henzell Run Time: 103 min. Format: DCP Release Year: 1972
Starring: Basil Keane, Carl Bradshaw, Janet Bartley, Jimmy Cliff, Ras Daniel Hartman
Screenwriter: Trevor D. Rhone, Perry Henzell
Producer: Perry Henzell
With a piece in his hand, he takes on the man! The epochal cultural moment that first brought reggae to the international stage, made Jimmy Cliff a star and demonstrated how music can change the world.
Fifty years on, The Harder They Come is still electric with the feeling of discovery. This Scarface-y blend of crime drama and musical tracks Cliff’s country-boy-in-search-of-fame through Jamaica under the guises of laborer, recording artist, convict, ganja dealer, and outlaw folk hero.
Before The Harder They Come, the collective perception of a “foreign film” was limited to the Bergmans and the Kurosawas of the world. This game-changer forever blew those doors off — and it still hasn’t lost a drop of its cool, its edge, or its way of making you dance.