Shaft in Africa Blu Ray Review (Warner Archive Collection)
Shaft in Africa is a 1973 blaxploitation film directed by John Guillermin (King Kong, Kong Lives, The Towering Inferno, Death on the Nile, & Sheena). It was written by Shaft franchise producer Stirling Silliphant (Village of the Damned, Over the Top, The Poseidon Adventure, & In the Heat of the Night). It was produced by René Dupont (A Christmas Story, The Man in the Iron Mask, Loose Cannons, & Collision Course) & Roger H. Lewis (Shaft franchise, The Swimmer, Night Games, & The Deadly Trap). This is the third film from the Shaft series. The budget was $2,142,000 & it made $1,458,000 during it’s run. It was followed up by a television show that very same year!!!!
Have you ever wanted to see a Black James Bond? This is the closest as it gets so far to that, this production mixed several sub-genres. Lots of action, violence, & sex in this final entry for the original trilogy. The first two films were very similar, they tried something completely different with Shaft in Africa. They tried to go bigger & they were hoping it was going to pay off. Unfortunately, the audience didn’t want something like this so it failed when it was released. They sold the rights to the character & a television show was made right away after this experiment. I actually thought it was pretty cool to see John Shaft in a whole new situation. The spy sub-genre was very popular at the time so they tried putting this iconic character in that scenario. It still delivered on everything that you would expect from a Shaft feature. I will say the other two had a much better cast, this one is solid but nothing special besides Richard Roundtree. He was good in this but it’s definitely his weakest performance in the role, I think at this point he was just there to collect the check. He was still the best thing about the entire production except for the beautiful eye candy from Vonetta McGee & Neda Arneric. The script knew exactly what it going for with this, it tried to stand out from the others but it went away what made this franchise so special. It’s a very fun & entertaining experience, it’s better than a decent amount produced during the same time. RECOMMENDED!!!!