Black Belt Jones (1974)
Among the many Blaxploitation films of the seventies, Black Belt Jones is certainly one of the best. Director Robert Clouse skilfully blends the action with humour and no cliché is left unturned. Jim Kelly proves very adept and his fighting style is both accomplished and enjoyable. Sporting cast of known genre names, such as Scatman Crothers, Gloria Hendry the film proves to be an entertaining eighty seven minutes. If you like this genre along with big Afro's, plaid pants and jive talking pimps, then Black Belt Jones ticks all the boxes. The plot is hardly complex drawing from stock story lines from the martial arts and action genres. However some of the dialogue is priceless with Malik Carter having all the best lines.
Pinky: "You see I got a couple of Bogarts coming in from Frisco".
Mafia Boss: "Bogarts? What are Bogarts?”
Pinky: "Treacherous Niggers".
The soundtrack is composed and performed by Dennis Coffey and Luchi De Jesus; the former a funk star in his own right, the latter an established composer within the Blaxploitation genre. Together the pair have produced some exceptional cues that mix guitars, funky basslines and traditional string orchestrations that reflect the musical idiom that was established by Shaft. The current soundtrack album nicely mixes together lines of dialogue and sound effects from the movie. The title theme itself is very memorable with its hip vocalisations, cool bass and blasting horns. If you enjoy this genre of movie and the music form this period, then soundtrack to Black Belt Jones is a solid investment.