Friday, June 19, 2009

SIFF 2009, Day 15 part 2

June 5, 2009


Black Dynamite is a tribute to 1970s blaxploitation and was born of a collaboration between director Scott Sanders and star, cowriter, fight choreographer... Michael Jai White.  And if Black Dynamite is any indication, they know exploitation cinema of the 1970s and made this homage to the genre that encapsulates all of the elements that made the movies of the era so enjoyable.  The plot is most definitely a nod to the genre as at first, Black Dynamite is looking for the man who killed his brother, but the plot spirals a bit out of control eventually leading Black Dynamite to battle the devious Dr. Wu on Kung Fu island.  Black Dynamite even takes The Man on face to face when he arrives at the white house. 

But the silliness of the plot doesn't  mean the Black Dynamite isn't completely awesome.  First of all, this movie is the blaxsploitation movie that was never made.  It is perfection.  Somehow it looks as if it was made 30 years ago.  The wardrobe is impeccable, the filming locations must have been broght in via time machine, and the music is incredible.  I even read somewhere that it was filmed using film and equipment of the era.  Black Dynamite is completely old school.  And it doesn't wink at you a single time.  This is a film with complete respect for the era and the genre.  There isn't a single lazy, "look at the silly 1970s clothes/hair/culture" joke in this movie.  It is very funny, but it is fun and often hilarious because it is played totally straight. 

And Black Dynamite is an awesome bad ass and has brought back the action hero.  I think Michael Jai White might just be the new Chuck Norris, since all of those "facts" that are attributed to Chuck Norris IS Black Dynamite.  And the SIFF audiences overwhelming agreed that Black Dynamite kicks ass as it took home the Golden Space Needle.  Don't miss Black Dynamite when it opens in September.




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