Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Richard Pryor, Jackie Gleason, Ned Beatty, Scott Schwartz, Teresa Ganzel, Wilfrid Hyde-White
Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: A rich white man essentially buys a helpless black man and orders him to perform odd jobs around his lavish, money-bags estate. It doesn’t take a history buff to draw the uncomfortable parallels between the inexcusably inappropriate 1982 comedy The Toy and our nation’s storied practicing of slavery.
The heinousness is even right there in movie’s title: The Toy, in this case Richard Pryor, who’s treated like a meaningless object that the film’s spoiled brat (Scott Schwartz) can do with as he pleases and then discard whenever he grows bored of him/it. The only thing that’s funny about it is that, years later, Schwartz’s performed in that 1996 timeless classic Scotty’s X-Rated Adventure. Which, we presume, required a whole new set of toys.