Movie of the Day – The Black Gestapo
February 8, 2013 3 Comments
Wow. Just wow.
Going down the Youtube rabbit hole one day, I ended up going through old exploitation trailers and the words “Black Gestapo” made me stop in my tracks. I could not have imagined the two words together…ever…but certainly enough I had to watch the trailer and to my surprise, it was perfect. I think what put me over the top in terms of tracking down the full the movie to watch, was that the trailer basically ended with “Victory through violence and vengeance for the New Master Race.” SOLD!
An interesting (if extremely violent) twist on the standard blaxploitation formula, this crime film deals with a black militant-group, led by Charles P. Robinson, whose members decide to clean up their Watts neighborhood by ridding it of white gangsters. Extreme mayhem follows, with slimy Caucasian hoodlums being castrated, shot, and flung from windows, but the black heroes begin overstepping their authority. Soon, they are no better than the mobsters and are even goose-stepping and chanting Nazi slogans, leading the community to revolt. Rod Perry stars, and cult pin-up queen Uschi Digart can be seen as a prostitute. ~ Robert Firsching, Rovi
Let’s get this out of the way. Like most blaxploitation films, this is plagued with some terrible production issues, quality and overall pacing issues that are all over the place. This isn’t a very coherent film, as the ideas just jump from scene to scene, but then again I don’t watch these exploitation movies for their cinematic touches. I watch them because they are just insane pieces of cinema, done during a time when there were just no rules and restraints. I mean an African-American gang that models themselves off the style of Hitler’s Gestapo in order to essentially take back their neighborhood from the white man through any and all means necessary. That my friends is fucking brilliant exploitation right there.
The movie itself is actually pretty damn entertaining, I mean why else would I be talking about it. The action and violence is just scene after scene of white people being beaten, thrown out of windows, castrated in some instances. The brutality isn’t being toned down, it just seems so much more amplified by watching a Black Gestapo take it to the man. It’s a chaotic mess of violence and lots of boobs, so fans of Russ Meyer films will be interested in who the lovely ladies are that appear in the film. But the violence isn’t just the selling point as the movie does have a muddy message to get across in that the gang start becoming corrupt themselves. A bit of irony in that even a well intentioned movement can fall prey to the very same thing they aim to fight or eradicate.
The Black Gestapo is a cross work of multiple genres in the exploitation cinema. Blaxploitation, Naizploitation (there is such a thing) and even Sexploitation with the bountiful amount of boobs in this movie. I think the kitsch factor of the movie is what will get people to see it. Hell the trailer hooked me and I had to watch it just for the fact that I can say I watched the movie an add another notch to the entertainment center. The Black Gestapo isn’t a great movie by any stretch but it certainly knows what it is and embraces it. Relentlessly violent, shocking in its subject matter and having a great ride to go along with the catching title is enough for me to recommend this to exploitation fans.