Black Caesar

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Retitled for release in Britain, although Black Caesar gives a more accurate indication of the film's theme of the hero as over-reacher. James Brown belts out 'Ain't It Cool to Be a Boss' as Williamson decides to take over Harlem's crime from the whites, ostensibly to give the blacks a better deal. In doing so, he ends up a white man's nigger, aping all that he has intended to destroy, and losing his girl into the bargain. Unfortunately it all remains too crude to convince one of its better intentions. What survives is a chase with the wounded Williamson riding taxi through snarled-up streets, his pursuers on foot; an extraordinary wish-fulfilment fantasy where a white middle class party (albeit of gangsters) is mown down; and an ending that caters for the inevitable sequel 'Hell Up in Harlem'.

Release details

Duration: 96 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Larry Cohen
Screenwriter: Larry Cohen
Cast: Fred Williamson
D'Urville Martin
Gloria Hendry
Art Lund
Val Avery
Minnie Gentry
Julius W Harris
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