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A Mafia buy out of Papa Byrd's karate school downtown ends in his death. Byrd's daughter, Sydney, refuses to sell, and wants revenge. Byrd's students call the Black Belt Jones for help. Jones reluctantly teams with Sydney in many battles.
Aside from the dated phrases, clothes and music this could be the present.
As a huge fan of 70's action movies, I was looking forward to seeing this, especially since it has Quentin Tarantino's endorsement. I was expecting another campy blaxploitation movie, but was very surprised that this was not the case. The film explores the politics and race relations in Detroit in the early 70's, using the repercussions of an armed robbery of a political fundraiser as a backdrop.
Aside from the funky music and 70's fashion, and to a certain extent the dialogue, this could easily be any urban area in the 90's. The media is portrayed as eager to turn this high-profile crime into a racially-motivated crime. The cops are shown as being under pressure from all sides to solve the case quickly.
As the investigation unravels, the viewer finds out that not everyone is who they seem to be. And although the end of the film is somewhat predictable, it is still entertaining.
Some of the dialogue is typical camp, and some of the acting is wooden, but the one major complaint I have with this movie is the chase scenes that are shown in immediate succession. Its almost as if the writers thought to pad the drama with some action as an afterthought. Overall, though I was very suprised by this film and the issues it attempts to address.
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