Actor Tom Laughlin, best known for writing, directing, producing and starring in the Billy Jack films, died Thursday at his home in Thousand Oaks, Calif., according to a post on the Billy Jack website. He was 82.
Question and answer session for Billy Jack at The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).
Trailer for Billy Jack.
A box-office success with an attractive plot for modern-day youth. Laughlin stars as a half-breed (half Indian, half white) war hero who fights bigotry and injustice with Karate-trained effectiveness.
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This is a modernizing of the classic Mr. Smith Goes to Washington with the only major exceptions being that it includes a bit of karate and that it bears the undeniable anti-nuke sentiment and even includes much of the original script and original words in full and names of the characters, sometimes borrowing heavily on the original musical score. As with the original, the Hero wishes to build a camp and is wanting to put it in the way of huge power plant being built to fulfill a graft in the home state and in the process is framed for owning the land for the two projects and filibusters to be heard "back home" and pushes for a "national initiative" to get a vote from everyone on every issue instead of a Congressional and Representative Republic.
An old west gunfighter and samurai swordsman realizes he must stop his brother-in-law from slaughtering local natives.
The record-breaking sequel to Billy Jack finds Billy trial and sentenced to prison while the Freedom School flourishes. The utopian existence of the school is characterized by everything ranging from "yoga sports" to muckracking journalism. The narrow-minded townspeople have different ideas about their brand of liberalism, and when Billy Jack is released, things heat up for the school. Students are threatened and abused, and the Native Americans in the neighboring village are taunted and mistreated. After Billy Jack undergoes a vision quest, the governor and the police plot to permanently put an end to them, leaving it up to Billy Jack to save the day in this pioneering, eye-opening, and relentlessly entertaining audience favorite!
The trend-setting smash hit that broke box office records and had audiences cheering! A half-Indian/half-white ex-Green Beret, Billy Jack is drawn more and more toward his Indian side. He hates violence but can't get away from it in the white man's world. Pitting the students of the peace-loving free-arts school in the desert against the oppressive bad guys in a nearby town, this action-packed film remains a landmark focusing on the most emotional themes of the time: anti-establishment, two-sided justice, and racial segregation and prejudice.
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