Well, no, we haven't forgotten that February is officially Black History Month. The Hollywood Liberals usually don't let us forget; although they've been quite preoccupied this year bashing Democracy. In the very early days of film, Harlem was a major movie center. The film companies moved out to Hollywood in the early 1920's, but a lot of Black-owned studios stayed on in New York and produced a number of films popular among American Blacks.
The trend was revived after the Civil Rights' Movement of the 1960s, in conjunction with 'Motown's' rise as a music force in the media. The effete Corporate Media today sneeringly refers to this genre of film as Blaxploitation. The reality is that most of it had an enormous audience across the board of all races and both genders. The successfulness that films of this era had really did more to integrate the media than anything Hollywood actually did. Frankly, today's trash-culture media is more racially exploitative than any of these older films generally were.
This weekend's recommendation is an action film that was released in 1974 and was a huge hit. Three the Hard Way stars former NFL rushing leader (and Trump supporter) Jim Brown with his friends Fred 'The Hammer' Williamson and Jim 'The Black Samurai' Kelly. You know that whenever these three team up, the bad guys are in for a rough time.
Brown plays the part of Jimmy Lait, a successful Motown studio owner who runs into a big problem. He finds his friend House wounded and seeking help. House has been investigating a suspicion eugenics research facility run by a bunch of Neo-Nazi scumbags. House gets killed and Lait's girlfriend Wendy is kidnapped by the Nazis as a hostage for Lait's silence.
But you can't keep a good man down, regardless of his race, color, or creed. Lait collects a couple of his buddies, soldier-of fortune Jagger Daniels (played by Fred Williamson) and karate expert Mister Keyes (played by Jim Kelly) and the trio set out to exact vengeance on the Nazis and rescue Wendy---despite several violent attempts to stop them. Along the way, they discover House's secret: the Nazis have developed a race-specific biochemical weapon which they are on the verge of deploying in three major cities. The trio split up to stop the genocide before the rescue attempt.
What a contrast to the thug-culture of the Media today. The characters these men depict are varied; but all heroic in the best masculine sense of the term. That's what is utterly lacking from most male Hollywood role-models today---men who instinctively did the right thing and took action. And there's no shortage of action in Three the Hard Way.
Although she only has a few parts, Lait's girlfriend Wendy (played by Sheila Frazier) is an enjoyable character. In a film genre known for hardened females, Wendy is a good old-fashioned damsel-in-distress. It's great watching the scenes where she taunts her captors by telling them confidently that 'her man is on the way'. In one priceless scene, the Nazi leader learns that Lait has teamed up with Daniels and Keyes, Wendy gloats: "Three of them? Now you've really a got a problem!"
The film spawned two sequels, One Down, Two to Go where the trio was joined by Richard Roundtree and a Western Take a Hard Ride, where they were joined by Lee Van Cleef. So why not make movie night a triple feature? All are available on Youtube as of this writing and on DVD as well.