Because the "all colored cast" or "race movies" of the first half of the 20th century were made on such low budgets, due to systematized racial discrimination in the United States of America at that time, it is not really right to compare their production values with comparable mainstream "poverty row" B-movie crime dramas of the same era. Also, there has been, until lately, little or no attempt to preserve or restore race films, and thus many of the copies circulating as of the early 21st century are taken from scratched 16 mm prints, have garbled sound tracks, or derive from "dupey" videotapes in worse condition than comparable poverty row films of the same era. Also, culturally speaking, there are, in sheer terms of run-time, more musical and dancing interludes in race film crime dramas than in mainstream poverty row crime dramas of the same era, a fact that is jarring to some modern Caucasian reviewers, but that truthfully reflects the interests of the intended African American audiences of the era in which these films were made. Therefore, in terms of "ranking," "rating" or "voting" for race film crime dramas at IMDb, it is imperative to discard these factors and judge the movies on their own unique merits. When viewed in this way, "Gang War," starring Ralph Cooper is a solid entry in the genre. The typical conflict of interest between devoting screen time to the gangster plot and devoting screen time to the singers, dancers, and specialty acts applies, but if one of the reasons you seek out and watch these movies *is* to see the variety acts, then "Gang War" will leave you quite satisfied. A restoration print is probably too much to hope for, but i still hold out hope that some day a true benefactor of film history will be led to give these films the same sort of restoration that has been accorded other early movies.
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