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Shaft | DVD | (09/04/2001)
from £2.95 | Saving you £12.52 (78.30%) | RRP
Samuel L. Jackson makes a gleefully updated John Shaft in John Singleton's homage (not remake) to the early 1970s action classic, picking up where Richard Roundtree's legendary Shaft left off. The Manhattan-set film features excellent performances, dynamic action scenes and witty one-liners (Jackson's Shaft: "It's my duty to please the booty"--although the line's deceptive: there's a surprising lack of sex in the film). Unfortunately, it's offset by a surprisingly uninspired, predictable, one-dimensional story, penned by Singleton, Richard Price and Shane Salerno. The story, in which Shaft investigates the murder of a young African American, is without suspense, since from the start the audience knows that rich white boy Walter Wade (Christian Bale) did the deed and that Shaft is going to kick his ass, big time. That said, charismatic performances--from Jackson (who, in keeping with the times, is more volatile and fiery than his predecessor), Toni Collette (as a frightened witness), the villainous Bale and the utterly amazing Jeffrey Wright (Basquiat)--make the film enticing and watchable. Look for a cameo by the original Shaft's director, the legendary Gordon Parks, and fans of the original should note that a still stunningly handsome Roundtree briefly appears as Jackson's uncle. --N.F. Mendoza, Amazon.com