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Posse (1993 film): Wikis


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Theatrical release poster
Directed by Mario Van Peebles
Produced by Preston Holmes
Jim Steele
Written by Sy Richardson
Dario Scardapane
Starring Stephen Baldwin
Big Daddy Kane
Tiny Lister
Tone Loc
Blair Underwood
Mario Van Peebles
Billy Zane
Faizon Love
Music by Michel Colombier
Cinematography Peter Menzies Jr.
Editing by Mark Conte
Seth Flaum
Studio PolyGram Filmed Entertainment
Working Title Films
Distributed by Gramercy Pictures
Release date(s) May 14, 1993 (U.S.)
Running time 111 min.
Country United States
Language English
Followed by Los Locos: Posse Rides Again

Posse is a 1993 Western film directed by and starring Mario Van Peebles. Featuring a large ensemble cast of mostly African-American actors, the film is about a posse of black soldiers and one ostracized white soldier, who are all betrayed by a corrupt colonel. The title of the film refers to a group of people who are summoned to help law enforcement officers. The story starts with the group escaping with a cache of gold, and continues with their leader Jesse Lee (Van Peebles) taking revenge on the men who killed his preacher father. The film was followed by a sequel in 1997 entitled Los Locos: Posse Rides Again.



The story is presented as a flashback told by an unnamed Old Man (Woody Strode), starts with a Cuban prologue during Spanish American War.

The story centers around a group of ragtag but mostly black infantrymen returning from the Spanish-American War with a cache of gold. The War brings together many principals, Obobo (Tiny Lister Jr.), Weezie (Charles Lane), Angel (Tone Loc), Jesse Lee (Mario Van Peebles) and Little J (Stephen Baldwin), to fight against common enemy. They are all mistreated and betrayed by Colonel Graham (Billy Zane). They are accompanied by few more soldiers and gamblers like Father Time (Big Daddy Kane). They are all fugitives and run with a cache of gold. They later travel to the West with their leader Jesee Lee to search for the men who lynched his father.



The story begins as the United States Army is waging the Spanish-American War in 19th Century Cuba where we join members of the 10th Cavalry Buffalo Soldiers led by Jesse Lee (Van Peebles). As they are barely holding their own against constant attacks from enemy troops, Jesse Lee runs back to the command post of the corrupt and racist Colonel Graham to request that the 10th Cavalry be allowed to pull back. Colonel Graham orders Lee to shoot a deserter in exchange for allowing the 10th to retreat. Unable to kill a man in cold blood, Jesse Lee demonstrates excellent marksmanship by shooting the man's cigar from his mouth. Colonel Graham then kills the deserter, and offers another prisoner called Little J, Jesse Lee's command of the 10th (the alternative would be to face the firing squad). Graham then orders the 10th to fall back in order to begin another mission, one in which they will be required to wear civilian clothing, as opposed to their Cavalry uniforms. They've been ordered to rob a Spanish gold shipment, which is a setup to give the Colonel an excuse to execute the entire 10th Cavalry as deserters. As he meets them with his own cavalry force, his aide Wheezie causes a distraction, allowing the 10th to shoot the Colonel and his cavalry down. With Colonel Graham and his troops supposedly dead, the remnants of the 10th led by Jesse Lee travel to New Orleans where Little J meets a gambler named Father Time and they begin playing poker, at which point Time is caught cheating. Little J helps the gambler escape and they go back to the hotel room where the others are hiding at telling them "We were never here" in fear that the vengeful gamblers might come for them. Doing just as J feared, the gamblers come in search of him and Father Time, only to be shot in the back by none other than the late Colonel Graham and more US troops. Angel is killed in the firefight while Little J, Father Time and the others barely escape. They meet up with Jesse who had left earlier to finish some business in a town out West.

The newly formed Posse heads West with Colonel Graham on their heels every step of the way. They stop in a town in between where Jesse has ammunition custom made out of gold in order to kill the demons of his past, using one to kill the man who made the ammunition, as he was one of the men who had lynched Jesse's father years before. Father Time later explains that the Voodoo ladies in New Orleans believe that gold is the only way to kill a demon. They make their way to Freemanville, a town made up entirely of African-Americans. Carter's deputy goes to cutterstown, not wanting to tip anyone off they are working together, he wonders why he is there. He is there to inform Bates that Jessie Lee is in Freemanville. They stay awhile until the Sherrif of a nearby town threatens the Sheriff of Freemanville that the town will burn unless Jesse Lee is turned over to him and his deputies. The Sheriff and several of his deputies were men that had lynched Jesse's father years before and were afraid that Jesse had come back for revenge. The sheriff and a few of his deputies attack the town that same night looking for Jesse Lee. One of the sheriffs beats Weezie in order to get answers. Little J watches and cannot handle the sight and fights back. Little J manages to make his way outside where more sheriffs are waiting, Little J gets taken down when he is attacked from the behind. Two of the sheriffs kick Little J around but when Bates joins the beating, a lot more of his men start beating Little J with their weapons. They beat Little J to death and take Papa Joe and Obobo as prisoners back to his own town where they'll get a "fair trial". Jesse poses as a Ku Klux Klan member and kills a deputy at the Sheriff's jail and rescues Papa Joe and Obobo. \

When he returns he convinces the townspeople to fight the Sheriff by telling them he wants the land for himself to sell to the railroad when it comes through. The citizens of Freemanville fight the Sheriff the next day when he rides in. As they begin to gain the upper hand, Colonel Graham arrives with his cavalry and a Gatling gun which he uses to cut the people down. Jesse charges the gun with a stick of dynamite destroying the gun and killing some of Graham's troops.

Meanwhile the Sheriff of Freemanville plans to run with the deeds to all of the property in Freemanville which is in his name but is stopped by Lana. Father Time shows up just in time to stop Sheriff Carter from hurting Lana. He kills one of Carter's deputies, but is killed by Carter. As Carter once again tries to flee, he is stopped by Sheriff Bates who reveals that they had a deal to split the proceeds from the land 50-50. Jesse arrives just in time to hear about the deal, and watches as Carter is betrayed and murdered by Bates. Jesse kills Bates in a showdown, finally putting his past demons to rest. Colonel Graham having captured Lana orders Jesse into the saloon where they have a climactic fight to the death resulting in Graham's death and the destruction of the saloon, which Graham had set ablaze with Lana still in it. Jesse, Obobo and Lana watch as the townspeople fight the fire.

The story ends years later with an old man being interviewed by reporters about the black cowboys of the west. The man, who was a young boy when he met Jesse Lee, gives the reporters a small book that Jesse had given him.

In the end a caption goes on to tell that there had been over 8,000 black cowboys in the Old West whose stories had never been told due to omission by Hollywood and others alike.


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