(out of 5)
The origin of blaxploitation in the seventies was this surprise hit thriller, the first time a notable action movie featured an African-American lead. Shaft (Richard Roundtree) is a hip and swinging cop with a cool demeanor and a serious talent for the ladies. He finds himself in the middle of some dastardly danger when white and black mafias collide over kidnapping and blackmail. The action scenes haven’t aged all that well, but the spirit is definitely still there and Isaac Hayes’s score is as funky as ever.
Directed by Gordon Parks
Cinematography by Urs Furrer
Produced by Joel Freeman
Production Design by Emanuel Gerard
Costume Design by Joseph G. Aulisi
Film Editing by Hugh A. Robertson