Bingo long and the traveling all stars book
The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings
The time is Hitler is moving into Czechoslovakia and making plans to invade Poland. A man in a contemporary newsreel amuses us by eating razor blades. The same newsreel takes us to Yankee Stadium to watch an all-star Negro baseball game. This is the preface to the genial, slapdash, high-spirited and occasionally moving comedy called "The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars and Motor Kings," about a barnstorming black baseball team in those long-ago, pre-Jackie Robinson days before the major-league ball clubs admitted black players. The film, which opened yesterday at five theaters in New York, stars Billy Dee Williams as Bingo Long, the flashiest pitcher in the entire Negro National League, and James Earl Jones as Leon Carter, the catcher with whom Bingo forms his own ball club when it becomes apparent that the owners black of the Negro teams are the new slave masters. For a comedy whose principal mission is to entertain, "The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars" also manages to provoke a lot of more sober, subsidiary responses that, happily, never get in the way of the show.