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Sheba Shayne (Pam Grier) returns to her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky to help her father. A proud businessman, he refuses to be intimidated by thugs attempting to run him out of business. While Sheba looks for the men (and the organization) supporting the thugs, she also finds a sinister motive behind their actions. Sheba's former flame Brick (Austin Stoker) adds some muscle to her mission. Written by
Ken Miller <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This lesser film from Pam Griers' days as a blaxploitation queen is nonetheless mildly pleasing. Because it's rated PG, it has less punch than Pams' best stuff. Some viewers will really miss the elements of sex and graphic violence. The script, by producer David Sheldon and cult director William Girdler, is somewhat less than inspired, with only one sequence - the pursuit through the carnival - that could be considered memorable. The cast is also more colourless than usual. But Pam, in her inimitable fashion, could make just about anything watchable. Hell, this is worth watching just to see her in a wetsuit.
Pam plays our title character, Sheba Shayne, a Chicago-based private eye who returns to her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. It seems that aggressive gangsters are constantly threatening her father Andy (Rudy Challenger) and his loan business, which Andy runs with Shebas' good friend Brick (Austin Stoker). Inevitably, the bad guys will have a full scale war on their hands once Sheba steps into the fray.
The ever engaging Stoker of "Assault on Precinct 13" fame is a good leading man for Pam, and D'Urville Martin is lively as "Pilot", a lowlife criminal. Christopher Joy is a hoot as a peddler who for whatever reason dresses more like a stereotypical pimp. Dick Merrifield is amusing enough as smiling, smarmy white guy villain "Shark". And it's nice to see Girdler regular Charles Kissinger as a mostly ineffectual white detective. Pam is great entertainment and eye candy as always, even if her role here isn't really on a level with her most famous ones.
The action scenes are passable (one comeuppance offers a spin on something we'd previously seen in "Coffy"), and the music score by Alex Brown and Monk Higgins (with vocals by Barbara Mason) is good, even if, like so much else here, it's also unmemorable.
Completists of the filmographies of Pam and Girdler will definitely want to check it out, no matter if it's not their best work.
Six out of 10.
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