37 user 44 critic

Black Caesar (1973)

Tommy Gibbs is a tough kid, raised in the ghetto, who aspires to be a kingpin criminal. As a young boy, his leg is broken by a bad cop on the take, during a payoff gone bad. Nursing his ... See full summary »




Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A gangster in Harlem must rescue his ex-wife, who has been kidnapped by the Mafia.

Director: Larry Cohen
Stars: Fred Williamson, Julius Harris, Gloria Hendry
Truck Turner (1974)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Truck is a bounty hunter who gets a job to track down a guy named Gator. When he and his partner find him, a chase ensues and Gator is killed. This makes Gator's woman, Dorinda, very angry ... See full summary »

Director: Jonathan Kaplan
Stars: Isaac Hayes, Yaphet Kotto, Alan Weeks
Bucktown (1975)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Duke Johnson visits a small Southern town, intent on burying his brother. After the funeral, he learns that he must stay for 60 days, for the estate to be processed. A few locals convince ... See full summary »

Director: Arthur Marks
Stars: Fred Williamson, Pam Grier, Thalmus Rasulala
Super Fly (1972)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The daily routine of cocaine dealer Priest who wants to score one more super deal and retire.

Director: Gordon Parks Jr.
Stars: Ron O'Neal, Carl Lee, Sheila Frazier
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A social worker tries to get a pimp to change his ways.

Director: Gilbert Moses
Stars: Roscoe Orman, Diana Sands, Thalmus Rasulala
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The story involves a white supremist plot to taint the United States water supply with a toxin that is harmless to whites but lethal to blacks. The only obstacles that stand in the way of ... See full summary »

Director: Gordon Parks Jr.
Stars: Jim Brown, Fred Williamson, Jim Kelly
Foxy Brown (1974)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A voluptuous black woman takes a job as a high-class prostitute in order to get revenge on the mobsters who murdered her boyfriend.

Director: Jack Hill
Stars: Pam Grier, Antonio Fargas, Peter Brown
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Gravedigger Jones and Coffin Ed Johnson are two black cops with a reputation for breaking the odd head. Both are annoyed at the success of the Reverend Deke O'Mailey who is selling trips ... See full summary »

Director: Ossie Davis
Stars: Godfrey Cambridge, Raymond St. Jacques, Calvin Lockhart
Coffy (1973)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A black nurse takes vigilante justice against inner-city drug dealers after her sister becomes their latest victim.

Director: Jack Hill
Stars: Pam Grier, Booker Bradshaw, Robert DoQui
Slaughter (1972)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Slaughter, a former Green Beret, avenges the killing of loved ones by the Mob, and in so doing is coerced by the Feds into traveling to Mexico to finish off surviving mobsters.

Director: Jack Starrett
Stars: Jim Brown, Stella Stevens, Rip Torn
The Mack (1973)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Goldie returns from five years at the state pen and winds up king of the pimping game. Trouble comes in the form of two corrupt white cops and a crime lord who wants him to return to the ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Campus
Stars: Max Julien, Don Gordon, Richard Pryor
Friday Foster (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Friday Foster, an ex-model magazine photographer, goes to Los Angeles International airport to photograph the arrival of Blake Tarr, the richest black man in America. Three men attempt to ... See full summary »

Director: Arthur Marks
Stars: Pam Grier, Yaphet Kotto, Godfrey Cambridge


Cast overview, first billed only:
Mr. Gibbs (as Julius W. Harris)
Minnie Gentry ...
Philip Roye ...
Joe Washington
Alfred Coleman
Patrick McAllister ...
Myrna Hansen ...
Virginia Coleman
Omer Jeffrey ...
Tommy as a Boy
Michael Jeffrey ...
Joe as a Boy


Tommy Gibbs is a tough kid, raised in the ghetto, who aspires to be a kingpin criminal. As a young boy, his leg is broken by a bad cop on the take, during a payoff gone bad. Nursing his vengeance, he rises to power in New York City's Harlem. Angry at the racist society around him, both criminal and straight, he sees the acquisition of power as the solution to his rage. He performs a free-lance hit on a Mob contract to attract the attention of the head of a Mafia family. Reluctantly accepted into 'The Family,' he grows increasingly autonomous and aggressive, eventually starting a gang war. Written by Tad Dibbern <DIBBERN_D@a1.mscf.upenn.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Hail Caesar, Godfather of Harlem...The Cat with the .45-Caliber Claws!


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 February 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Godfather of Harlem  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Cameo: Andrew Duggan as 'man at shoeshine.' See more »


The mob boss's forks, in the Italian restaurant. See more »


Tommy Gibbs: [at Mama's funeral] I gave her everything she wanted, Rufus, but she still wasn't ever happy.
Reverend Rufus: You know, I almost feel like I could pray for her.
See more »


Referenced in Martin: All the Players Came (1995) See more »


Mama's Dead
Written by James Brown and Fred Wesley
Performed by James Brown
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

This Caesar Comes To Bury You
29 August 2004 | by See all my reviews

****SPOILERS**** Stylish and brutal "Black Caesar" is also a bit over-the-top in it's depiction of a Harlem hood working himself up to the top of the New York City mob syndicate and then losing it all in what seems like a matter of weeks if not days.Fred Williamson is at his all time baddest best as the super cool cat Tommy Gibbs the Harlem gangster with the heart of gold and fists of steel who takes on the Mafia with his brawn's and the crooked police and politicians with his brains and just when he's got it all blows it down the drain.

Captain McKinney, Art Lund, who gave Tommy when he was 14 years-old the nickname "Limpy", by busting his kneecap with his police nightstick, tries to do Tommy in by getting his former girlfriend Helen, Gloria Hendry, to steal a safe-deposit key from him. The key opens a box that contains the both explosive and incriminating Goosic ledgers that Tommy ripped off from Goosic's office when he was reviewing them. Goosic a top bag-man for the corrupt cops and politicians has a record of all the pay-offs that they got from the mob and elsewhere through the years. Tommy is using that information to blackmail McKinney, and all those corrupt officials in them, to keep the heat off him and keep him alive as well.

Later getting shot on a mid-town street Tommy kills the hood who shot him and escapes from McKinney's men by jumping into a taxi and then goes to Coleman, William Wellman,his back-stabbing lawyer's office. Coleman turned out to be murdered by McKinney in order for him to get his hands on the Goosic ledgers after he, Coleman, doubled-crossed his client Tommy by giving them to McKinney. McKinney plans to pin the murder of Coleman on Tommy,to cover up his crime! In short McKinney double-crossed the double-crosser, Coleman, to frame the double-crossed,Tommy, with a murder rap.

McKinney instead of killing Tommy when he surprises him at Coleman's office forces him it spit-shine his shoes, now that's really rubbing it in. Tommy knocking his gun out of his hand paints McKinney's face with shoe polish and forces him to sing "Mammy", McKinney's singing is plain horrible, before he smashed his head in with the shoe-shine box killing him. Still badly wounded Tommy goes to his old neighborhood in Harlem and is attacked by a gang of young toughs, Tommy Gibbs wannabes, but survives the ordeal to make a sequel to the movie "Black Caesar": "Hell up in Harlem".

The most unusual aspect about the film "Black Caesar" is that it was so successful that it spawned a sequel the same year, 1973, that it was released. Even though "Black Caesar" was to take place at the time that it was made and we see at the end of the movie a date, as if it had great historic and momentous significance, which flashed on the screen against the New York City skyline as being August 20, 1972? What exactly was that day supposed to be in world history?

In the "Black Casear" sequel "Hell up in Harlem" were shown in the movie that most of the events takes place two or three years into the future or in 1975 and 1976 not 1973 when the movie was made and released! It's as if the film were a sci-fi not crime movie! Now how's that for keeping the right time!

5 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 37 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Watch the Latest Episode of "The IMDb Show"

Katee Sackhoff talks about her characters on "Battlestar Galactica," "Star Wars: Rebels," and "The Flash." Plus, "The IMDb Show" learns what it takes to wield a lightsaber.

Watch the show