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That's the Way of the World

3.8 out of 5 stars 62 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Gritty, obscure musical drama stars Harvey Keitel as a talented young record producer who becomes embroiled in pop music's seamy underbelly when his clueless boss instructs him to ignore a hot new R&B act (played by Earth, Wind & Fire!) in favor of a troubled vocal trio. Cynthia Bostick, Ed Nelson, Bert Parks, and famed D.J. Murray the 'K' also star. Songs include the title track, "Shining Star" and "Reasons."

Special Features

  • Commentary by Verdine White and Ralph Johnson of Earth Wind and Fire
  • Still and poster gallery
  • Trailers and TV spots
  • 8-page booklet with liner notes and photos

Product Details

  • Actors: Harvey Keitel, Ed Nelson, Cynthia Bostick, Bert Parks, Jimmy Boyd
  • Directors: Sig Shore
  • Writers: Robert Lipsyte
  • Producers: Ron Gorton, Sig Shore, Phillip Fenty
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (DTS 5.1), English (Unknown)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Bci / Eclipse
  • DVD Release Date: July 18, 2006
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000FKO41Q
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #97,862 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "That's the Way of the World" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Irony? It's a pity. Back when this movie was originally made in 1975, movies starring black artists had a tendency to be short on plot, budget, & actual input from the actors. There was precious little input from the members of EWF, & the story line suffered. Of course Sig Shore of Superfly fame was notorious for these movies, & in true form the REAL stars of the movie, EWF,had little more than a cameo appearance in a movie named after their breakthrough LP. They litteraly mirrored the record labels brush off of the Group (EWF) in the movie. Although the live footage, & the instrumental backing done by EWF was stellar, there was precious little of it. Even Harvey Kietel couldn't save such a bad script. Sad to say most record companys still do business in this fashion, so the script comes off as sad but true. It's a fair assessment of the music & the blacksplotation films of the time, & a sad assessment of the music industry as a whole. Not a great film, but entertaining none the less. Outside of EWF's music, I'd say the plot reeks of Saturday Night Fever psydo drama. If you're a big EWF fan, you'll enjoy their music, but be prepared for a long wait to get to it. Rare film. The movie is OK.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I remember back around 1976 when a friend of mine brought the album "That's the Way of the World" over to my house. I read the cover and saw that the album was a soundtrack to a movie. I wondered why I had never heard of this movie and why nobody I knew ever talked about it. Now I know why...because it SUCKED! No, I'm kidding. It's because it came in and out of theaters so quickly that practically no one saw it.

This movie is worth the price of admission if only just to see Charles Stepney in the studio, and actually playing the piano, albeit he only plays a few chords. The other interesting parts for me were the studio scenes where the session musicians laid down the tracks for that crappy song by The Pages.

You could take the plot and dialogue of this movie and apply it to the present day music industry and it will answer your question "Why is music such crap these days?"
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When I got my own copy of the "That's the Way of the World" album in 7th grade (around '87), I noticed "hidden text" that said that it was the soundtrack to a movie of the same name. I'd always wanted to see the movie, and since I AM a gung-ho EWF fan, that's why I bought it.

As a movie, IT'S NOT GREAT. The acting is sub-par (and that's saying A LOT since this came out during the so-called "Blaxploitation" era), and it seems that the writers rely on cliches in portraying many of the characters. I give the Maurice White and the other cats an "A" for effort for the little bit of acting they try to do, though. They're not in the movie very much. Like others have said, there's only a little bit of live peformance footage.

From the perspective of a musician, FUNKATEER, and EWF lover, though, the opening scene of the movie is what I enjoyed the most...seeing the cats in a simulated studio situation. For other connoisseurs of soul, a real treat is getting to see footage and hear the voice of Charles Stepney (who tries some acting), EWF's legendary producer and arranger. Also there are a couple of montage's demonstrating the recording/creative process. These were truly pleasures to watch.

As far as the extras were concerned, no big whoop. I was particularly disappointed with the commentary. Ralph Johnson's voice came through loud and clear, but it sounded like Verdine White was on the other side of the room without a mic and was largely hard to understand throughout. How the producers of the package allowed that to happen is beyond me.

All in all, it you're an EWF completist, you should own this DVD...just BECAUSE. For the rest of you, well, you can take it or leave it.
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My fiancee has been looking for this movie for years. He told me EW&F was in a movie with the same name as their album, but I didn"t believe him. He has watch this movie over and over since he got it. Thanks!!! A happy man makes a happy home! :)
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The movie was a pleasant surprise. I saw Maurice in a different way. A smart businessman besides being a mountain of talent. Harvey is always a cool guy. I also enjoy the time-capsule effect the movie has. It was Boss.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
This review doesn't concern the Movie Quality... Just the Audio.

I can't review this Movie because... almost immediately upon starting-up this disc, the Audio was ridiculously out-of-sync. At first I assumed it was just bad editing in the opening Musical Segment, but afterwards it was obvious that there are serious sync issues here. So I didn't get a chance to enjoy this Movie at all.

I have a PS3 that I play all my Blu-Rays from. So, this may be be a PS3 Issue, but I haven't had any other Sync Problems in the last few years.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
This showed very little of EWF and lots of Harvey Keitel. As was done in those days, the blacks were secondary after thoughts to their white counterparts HENCE THE TITLE, THAT'S THE WAY OF THE WORLD! Other than the music, the film had very little to offer in the way of content or substance. Philip Bailey in his book stated that V. White actually cried when they saw the finished product. I didn't cry but I could understand how he must have felt.
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