Bustin' Loose - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Bustin' Loose Reviews

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December 3, 2017
Richard Pryor in his prime but the movie is mediocre.
½ September 29, 2017
9/29/2017: Meh. A very forgettable film. Zero funny moments.
August 5, 2015
Some really fun Pryor stuff crammed into a very mediocre film. I can't, and clearly the filmmakers can't, decide if this is supposed to be a family film or a racy, and slightly raciest, adult comedy.
April 27, 2015
good comedy adventure pic
October 27, 2014
Ex-con on probation is coerced to deliver eight troubled children to Washington on a suspect bus after their home in Philly is shut down. Pryor's charisma shines through again above the rest of the film. Was surprised to see Pryor slap one child, they would probably remove that bit if made today.
September 17, 2014
Richard Pryor's best work ever.
August 15, 2013
Bustin' Loose shows some warmth as well as laughs from Pryor--Richard Pryor busts ya one!!
August 7, 2013
Richard Pryor's acting is actually decent, but the movie is pretty generic.
March 7, 2013
"Joe" (the late Richard Pryor) is a foulmouth con man/thief who has been in trouble with the law in the past for most of his life. When he gets arrested again, he is brought in front of a judge (Bill Quinn) and is assigned community service.

He is assigned as a bus driver for special needs students and their teacher (Cicely Tyson), who is taking the students, who the community has shunned, from Philadelphia to a farm in Washington state.

At first, "Joe" is not happy with his situation and does not like what he has been forced into. However, he slowly learns that there is more to life then himself.

The first thing you'd expect from a Richard Pryor movie is jokes laced with four-letter words. There is that, but they basically stop about half-way through the movie. Pryor keeps the laughs going, but they aren't side-splitting jokes. Many of the jokes, in fact, only produce some good chuckles.

There are some good performances in the cast. And, as "Joe" begins to warm up to the kids, you get to see some fair chemistry between them and Pryor. In fact, Pryor's performance is probably the best. "Joe" starts off as a street-wise punk, but slowly becomes a loving man who now knows there are people in more need than he. Pryor shows off the transformation really well. Tyson does a good job herself, and has pretty good chemistry with Pryor and especially the children. To me, it looks as if Pryor and Tyson took time to get to know their young co-stars and began to care for them to the point that they brought that to the screen.

If you ask me, the music is not great. The movie was released in the early 1980's, but sounds like pop from a decade earlier. The music, with the theme song sung by Roberta Flack, is not memorable. The theme song, which you hear a few times during the film, is not even catchy. If the theme song was released today, I can pretty much guarantee it wouldn't chart on Billboard.

The wardrobes are typical for the time the movie was released, and nothing really stands out. It is a trip to see the clothing of when I was 10 though.

I personally wouldn't put it in my Top 10 "Must See" movies, but I would probably put it somewhere on the low side of my Top 5 choices for rent if my first movie wasn't available.
November 4, 2012
this movie is so funny. the kids are so mischevious and fun.
½ October 27, 2012
A career petty criminal is forced by his parole officer to drive a bus load of orphans to a new country home. A bit of a hit and miss production for me. The kids needed to be as likable as Pryor to lift this film above mediocrity.
½ May 27, 2012
One of the few Richard Pryor flicks I missed out on back in the 80's. I remember the original movie poster with him and the KKK in the background. Some funny moments here and there, but not enough.
½ March 25, 2012
Solid first half, but then spirals downhill quickly. It's certainly not without its charms, though - just a bit too corny.

And the ending, well, the ending defines 'corny.'
½ October 31, 2011
A career petty criminal is forced by his parole officer to drive a bus load of orphans to a new country home. A bit of a hit and miss production for me. The kids needed to be as likable as Pryor to lift this film above mediocrity.
½ October 2, 2011
The first half is very touching when Richard Pryor's character seems to connect emotionally with the children, and then it all of a sudden becomes a crazy slapstick caper until an abrupt end. I still like it though.
½ June 21, 2011
How to get out of jail if the warden's as dumb as he is corrupt.
June 17, 2011
The legendary Richard Pryor caught in a mediocre film but quite often that was the case for the comedian. Too often he wasn't given the projects to match his talent. Bustin Loose is one of those film & I think the biggest problem is that it doesn't know it's target audience so the comedy suffers. This movie was a staple when I was a kid but because of the language it really isn't a kid's movie. It's not like you want your ten year old to pick up the word 'mother-fucker' like me but this comes off as a R rated family dramedy. There are some funny bits like w/ the KKK (I still laugh when Pryor kisses that klan member on the lips) but after about an hour it runs out of steam. W/ out Pryor this would be a one star movie.
Super Reviewer
January 10, 2011
Although the story is predictable and familiar, Pryor's comedy is what is showcased in this movie, and he's really funny. if you're a fan you should see this movie.
April 27, 2010
It seems every comedian has to do one of these movies with kids for some reason, not all of them being that good, but I really enjoyed this movie, Pryor is hilarious and there's some real exciting scenes. I would highly recommend this movie to anyone who likes Pryor's comedy.
½ April 5, 2010
How to take care of the KKK using just your words?? Ask Richard Pryor, because this is the movie where he does it...
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