Babylon by Franco Rosso (UK, 1980, 95’)

British drama film written by Franco Rosso and Martin Stellman (Quadrophenia). Filmed in SE London, it follows the young reggae MC Blue (interpreted by Brinsley Forde of British reggae act Aswad) of the fictional sound system Ital Lion facing personal and family issues as well as systemic racism and police violence, during the days ahead of a much awaited soundclash. Highlights include the score by the UK reggae maestro Dennis Bovell and Jah Shaka playing himself. Unreleased in the US until 2019 for “being too controversial, and likely to incite racial tension”.


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