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Bruce D. Clark
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Fred Williamson stars as Stone, a Los Angeles-area private eye. After a movie star's funeral, the star's signature walking cane disappears. Stone discovers that the cane is somehow connected to a string of murders. Stone's investigation takes him onto a porn movie set and into a religious cult. A major subplot involves Stone's intermittent relationship with a young bisexual woman, and the tension therein. Written by
Ken Miller <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Not the best Fred Williamson movie by a long shot!
Fred Williamson ('Black Caesar', 'Vigilante', 'From Dusk Til Dawn') was one of the coolest and most charismatic blaxploitation stars of the 1970s, but 'Black Eye' is by no means one of his best movies. Williamson himself is pretty good as always, but the pedestrian script and lacklustre direction (by Jack Arnold, who later worked with Williamson on the lame Western comedy 'Boss N*igger') don't do him any favours. Arnold directed 1950s classic 'Creature From The Black Lagoon' and 'The Incredible Shrinking Man', but had been mainly working in TV, and I think it really shows. 'Black Eye' feels like a TV pilot. It's like blaxploitation-lite. Williamson plays an ex-cop investigating the murder of a call girl and the theft of a walking stick she had stolen from a recently deceased Hollywood movie star. The trail leads him to a drug ring, porno movies and a religious cult, which sounds very Dashiell Hammett and interesting, but it isn't. It's very dull and never picks up steam. The supporting cast includes two actors familiar to 70s TV viewers, Richard Anderson ('The Six Million Dollar Man's Oscar Goldman), and the foxy Teresa Graves ('Get Christie Love'). Graves had previously co-starred with Fred Williamson in 'That Man Bolt', which may not be my favourite Williamson vehicle, but it was a damn site more entertaining than this! I say give 'Black Eye' a miss unless you're an obsessive fan of "The Hammer". If you haven't seen it, you really aren't missing much. Newcomers to Williamson are advised to go directly to Larry Cohen's brilliant 'Black Caesar' which features a dynamite Williamson performance, and a super cool score from The Godfather Of Soul James Brown.
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