Saturday, July 21, 2012

Blaxploitation Explosion: Death Journey (1976), Truck Turner (1974), Trouble Man (1972), Super Fly (1972)

Death Journey (1976)
"One mean cat" Jesse Crowder (Fred Williamson) is hired to take star witness (Bernard Kirby) from Los Angeles to New York. Sounds like a easy job but themobsters who want the star witness dead make their journey feel like a trip through hell, a real Death Journey! But don't worry , Crowder still has the time to get it on with the ladies.

Aaah, shit. Fred, Fred. Even the meanest bad ass on the face of the planet, Fred Williamson,  can't really save this one. Full of long shots of stuff that really could have been easily left on the cutting room's floor: Williamson practising karate, Bernard Kirby eating chocolate etc. Those scenes must be put in to get the running time little longer. It's now clocking just little over 70 minutes. Couple of good action scenes, but i have to say that movie is definitely not the best movie starring Williamson. Fred Williamson also directed this one.

Truck Turner (1974)
Truck Turner is a bounty hunter (Isaac Hayes). He gets a job to bring in guy named Gator. Gator gets killed and now the Gator's woman has put out a contract on Turner. When Turner's sidekick buddy gets killed, Turner will make all those mobster pay for it.

Full of iconic shots with Hayes pointing his .357 Magnum and blasting away the pimps and mobsters. The dialog in this movie just makes me laugh out loud. Absolutely brilliant. The man with the silky voice, Isaac Hayes, is really good in this role. I have to track down also the screen debut from Hayes, Tough Guys from 1974. It's really sad that he didn't make any more Blaxploitation films. I think that the music of course took most of his time at this point of his life.

Trouble Man (1972)
Local tougher than nails go-to guy Mr T (Robert Hooks) gets in a middle of local illegal gambling territory wars. Masked men are robbing the other gangs joints. Gang hires Mr T to solve the problem but he gets framed for killing one of the robbers who turns out to be member of the rival gang. Now Mr T has to figure out who is behind all this and most of all stay alive!

Easily one of the best Blaxploitation movies. Robert Hooks gives an amazing performance as the Mr "nobody f**ks with me" T. Action is top notch and dialog is full of stuff that makes you just want to yell "Yeah!" all the time. Recommended.

Super Fly (1972)
Priest (Ron O'Neal) is a small time drug dealer. He starts to realise that only way to survive is to end his dope dealing days. So he decides to make just one more big deal and then quit. But it's not that easy to get out of the "cocaine business".

First of all i have to say that this movie has one of the best "theme songs" of the genre. Curtis Mayfield's Pusherman is just a brilliant song. Mayfield also makes apperance in the film, as a night club singer performing the Pusherman. This movie works on all levels, great story and acting is top notch. Especially the scene where Priest and his pusher friend gets a proposition that will change their lives and they discuss in the street corner about their future.

Highly recommended.


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