The Harder They Come Review

Image for The Harder They Come

A poor Jamaican, a 1970s anti-hero, tries to make it with a hit record but finds that payola rules.


A small piece of Afro-Caribbean retro heaven, complete with selective subtitles for the Creole impaired, comes via this cautionary Jamaican tale about a musician on the make in the big city. Pre-Marley reggae idol Jimmy Cliff plays the antihero Ivan, first shafted by the music industry before winding up as a ganja delivery boy who asks too many questions landing him in hot water with the local corrupt police Chief. A long-standing cult favourite on the midnight screening circuit, it feels a bit worn around the edges, yet Perry Henzell’s energetic direction of a well written story gives the film an angry momentum. Best of all though is the rollicking bubble gum reggae soundtrack.

A Jamaican classic with an awesome OST.