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Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp

6.81 h 28 min201413+
Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp examines the tumultuous life of legendary Chicago pimp Iceberg Slim and how he reinvented himself from pimp to author of 7 groundbreaking books. These books were the birth of Street Lit and explored the world of the ghetto in gritty and poetic detail and have made him a cultural icon.
Jorge Hinojosa
Ice-TQuincy JonesChris Rock
English [CC]
Audio languages

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Supporting actors
Snoop DoggHenry Rollins
Entertainment One
Content advisory
Alcohol usefoul languagesexual contentsmokingsubstance useviolence
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4.2 out of 5 stars

182 global ratings

  1. 69% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 10% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 7% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 5% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 10% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

Ramen NoodlesReviewed in the United States on March 25, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
A Rollicking & Fascinating Documentary About One of the Coolest & Most Enlightened Authors Ever
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Like many, I discovered Iceberg Slim's, absolutely stunning, novels @ an outdoor news stand in Hollywood. The first being Long White Con, which is still one of my favorites; after reading the first paragraph, I realized I had something special & was immediately hooked. I bought his entire collection @ that stand, and began obsessively pouring over them. They're such unique & intimate stories that transport you to that time & place in which they're set. Slim is a master storyteller (especially in really life), who never judges his characters; simply painting an honest portrait of their lives, dreams & abilities. Even the worst of them are given a rich inner life. This important documentary, about one of the most important authors of all time, is full of intimate & revealing information about Slim. His youth, his growth & his transformation from an enlightened, but deeply troubled, pimp & con man into an enlightened, but deeply troubled, author who changed the entire game. He gave voice to the voiceless & allowed the world to truly see a slice of society that most would never see or understand without his rollicking & addictive novels. You should watch this movie & read his books. They're both full of gold & power that will resonate & educate for centuries to come.
12 people found this helpful
MelvinReviewed in the United States on June 14, 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
I am glad 'Slim' spoke against "the GAME" because what I found ...
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I read the Iceberg Slim paperback and I found it enlightening to a young man growing up away from "the Life" . I never wanted to be a member of the "street Life" but, at that time thought I needed a "ten-foot-pole" knowledge of some of the things I had seen and heard. As well as what to look out for, in the 'Streets' , where I was NOT allowed to go! I am glad 'Slim' spoke against "the GAME" because what I found out made me very weary of what there was to find "out-there". After all, I found I really did not need to know what I found out! This expose' underscored exactly what I had gleaned from reading, seeing and the little I personally experienced in Chicago's vast areas of sectionalism and segregation.
10 people found this helpful
K. (a guy)Reviewed in the United States on June 1, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
More adulation for a destructive lifestyle but a portrait of an all too human man.
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You'll get the standard fair of how bad and depraved "the game" is as the producers attempt to; as they always claim, deliver a deeper message to its audience. A credit to the film though in that there is real and thought provoking discussions that still plague a people and what have become acceptable societal constructs of African American men.

As with any human character piece you'll get a lot of complexity. And if you're observant you'll catch some unexpected gems. How a man who strongly believes you either work for yourself OR your making someone else their money. Winds up being ripped off royally by the same ole' exploitative stereotypical Jewish handler. Mr. Beck had; as he claimed, an ability to meter out violence to women. But wound up sending his wife to get what was rightfully his royalties. A tragically funny scene is how one daughter is in denial about her father during their childhood; as we all can be in such cases, but the movie puts the evidence and other siblings out front to show the real situation. There's even a cringe worthy photo.

What does seem fitting in a way is that Birdman and Slim two allegedly notorious scam hustlers apparently own the rights to Iceberg Slim's body of work. And you can just tell that his estate and the true muse and brainchild of what became his phoenix resurrection is probably seeing next to nothing in royalties. I leave it up to the viewer to see for themselves what the second wife was to Mr. Beck. In all the film is very polished and moves but just like the subject Robert Beck aka Iceberg Slim if you're observant you'll see deeper and through some of the aura.
4 people found this helpful
BananabreathReviewed in the United States on July 8, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
My advice: pair this film with the book "Pimp" ...
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My advice: pair this film with the book "Pimp". I'm not sure if one would get as much out of this film without having read at least one of Iceberg Slim's books. "Pimp" is constantly referenced but the true realness and weight of the book isn't fully represented here. However, it was fascinating to see Iceberg Slim's family and listen to the stories and impressions that he had on others.
14 people found this helpful
West Virginia WoolfReviewed in the United States on July 26, 2021
2.0 out of 5 stars
Fanboys Marveling Over a Sadistic Psychopath
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This documentary was well worth doing, but not like this!

Iceberg Slim was basically a P.O.S. He was a smart P.O.S., but little more than that.

I'm not easily offended, but I do think that a guy who enjoys torturing women has crossed more than a few lines.

I can't help but wonder how it would be if they had made a film with men marveling over Ted Bundy's utterances. How would those men look to us?

Of course there are differences. Iceberg Slim was smarter than Ted Bundy, and Bundy never wrote anything. (Again, the brilliance of his work is not the issue here.)

Both men enjoyed torturing women, but Bundy killed his victims.

The pain inflicted by Bundy lasted for hours and then it was over.

The pain inflicted by Slim lasted for years.

Rave on, Fanboys!
3 people found this helpful
Looking CloserReviewed in the United States on March 2, 2021
1.0 out of 5 stars
Wathus Interruptus
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Could only make it through a few minutes of this exploitative, glorification of an American bad boy. No mention of the ruined lives, the brutality, etc., and I wasn't going to wait to hear these being exploited, too. Interviews by the usual suspects, who by the way now have made lucrative careers out of their "street creds." What about those who died from that life? No envy here. Crime dramas are fun, but the real stories are not so fabulous.
4 people found this helpful
Amazon CustomerReviewed in the United States on July 27, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
A literary titan of the Black experience
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An author I followed back when I was in grade school. His books were entertaining, informative, and real. Raw to the bone real. I enjoyed watching the film because I was always curious to see what Iceberg Slim looked like and how he came off as a person. I got the impression that he was as genuine as a ex-pimp, ex drug dealer and user could be, and I know from personal experience what drugs and living the fast life can do to a person. Iceberg Slim wrote in a stark and highly descriptive way of the pitfalls and pain that self destruction brings to black folks who choose to go down this pathway of life. He will always be a hero to me and most black people in America. It warmed my heart to see the beautiful and intelligent children that he and his wife brought up. It was plain that he did a good job of being a parent to his daughters. Rest in peace Ice, you did a lot to educate us from your personal experiences.
10 people found this helpful
@thetruthneverliedReviewed in the United States on September 13, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Worth Watching 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟❤️
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Please read this book PIMP! to appreciate and respect the power of this documentary. I remember reading this book when I was 16 years old. It is a girls guide to the realities of the world we live in today, and tomorrow!
It helped change my out look in many aspects...
Read his entire collection...
8 people found this helpful
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