28 Days of Black Movies: 5 absolutely serious and culturally resonant reasons to watch ‘My Side Piece Hit the Lotto’

OPINION: I’m not even joking a little bit when I say this might be one of the greatest cinematic achievements in Black history.

"My Side Piece Hit the Lotto." (Black Waterhorse)

One of my favorite pastimes is firing up Amazon Prime and perusing the collection of Black films available. And baaaaaaby, Amazon Prime has a treasure trove of pure foolishness; I love it. I will scroll and scroll until I see a movie whose cover art is either completely nonsensical, or if I come across a title that activates a part of my Blackness that requires me to see if the title lives up to the cultural potential. This is how I came across 2018’s non-smash hit, My Side Piece Hit the Lotto, a film directed by Dewey Allen (“written” by Allen, Mando Allen and Terrie Todd; the latter two also star in the film), whose credits include Mississippi Turntup, Studio Gangster and My Side Piece. I’m sure you haven’t seen any of them. But that’s OK; that’s what I’m here for. 

I don’t know what you have going on in your life or how busy you are, but if you have two free hours to kill and are looking for something to do while you practice spades on an app, here are five completely serious and important reasons to check out My Side Piece Hit the Lotto.

1. It’s important to try new things. 

I’ll bet you pride yourself on being a maverick. You eat at new places and try foods from places you’ve never been. You love a good foreign flick that insinuates just how much depth you have as a human. Well, why not try a movie that isn’t intended to be any good but fun, that will be something you can talk about for eons in movie circles. Sure, you could talk about the latest period piece about some white people pretending to be royalty, or you could watch a movie that stars people named Badazz Cutie that instantly makes you more interesting as a human in any conversation you might have about cinema.

Speaking of…

2. This movie stars people like Badazz Cutie and Pokey Bear. Yes, that’s really how they’re listed.

I mean, come on. You owe it to yourself. Sure you can watch movies with Sidney Poitier (and you should), but when was the last time you saw a movie starring somebody whose name was essentially their Twitter handle? Probably been a while. Do better.

3. I’m fairly certain that not a single line of this movie is scripted.

Black people are nothing if not creative. This movie illustrates that for nearly two hours. Each scene, as constructed, includes people sitting around making up believable (OK, maybe not believable) conversations on the spot that last too long but are straight from the heart. Word to Con Funk Shun. If that isn’t the resilience of the Black condition, I don’t know what is.

4. The film pays homage to Friday. 

There is even a character named Mama Worm and a kid clearly working his way up to Big Worm status. It’s a neighborhood crime story that kind of is a love story, too. Isn’t that what all great hood stories are made of? There’s even a candy lady. This entire movie owes its existence to Friday, and we’re all better for it. 

5. Momma Dee of Love & Hip Hop Atlanta fame is in this movie.

That right there should be enough to get you up off your seat and right to your streaming device to fire up this gem of Black foolywang, nonsensical sound effects and attempts to live out all of our dreams of being in a movie. Get you a homie who wants to make movies with his iPhone and make magic; that’s what this film, complete with its own soundtrack, teaches me. And during Black History Month, that’s the lesson we should all take away from our art and contributions to the culture.

Panama Jackson theGrio.com

Panama Jackson is a columnist at theGrio. He writes very Black things and drinks very brown liquors, and is pretty fly for a light guy. His biggest accomplishment to date coincides with his Blackest accomplishment to date in that he received a phone call from Oprah Winfrey after she read one of his pieces (biggest) but he didn’t answer the phone because the caller ID said “Unknown” (Blackest).

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