Ain't It Cool News (www.aintitcool.com)
Movie News

Segue Zagnut is... not all hyped about SHAFT

Hey folks, Harry here. Tonight I saw RULES OF ENGAGEMENT, and quite frankly... it kicked serious ass.... I just loved the chemistry between Tommy Lee Jones and Samuel L Jackson. Sam is the man... And before the film we saw the amazingly slick and cool trailer that has all the style, flair and essence of cool that... well, it sounds like the film itself might be missing. Opinion on this one is decidedly split. I'm hoping that Segue is on some loco-weed and can't feel the vibe of Shaft coming off of that screen. Perhaps, with Sir Hayes in Digital Surround... thumping pumpin and singing something to set the rhythm for the whole goddamn thing. It's still way way waaaaaay early on this film, so just hold the judgements till we get closer to the gun.


Head Geek,

Tonight I saw Shaft. Samuel Jackson's new film directed by Jon Singleton. The short review... it's crap.

The version I saw appeared to be a fairly rough print of the finished product. They didn't hand out questionnaires, they didn't make a speech and it felt finished, but a lot of edits jumped and the color was off occasionally. Not that it matters really.

The film starts with Shaft arriving at the scene of a racially motivated murder. He picks out the bad guy from a crowd of people in a bar thanks to a silent tip from a waitress (played by Toni Collette). Collette witnessed the murder but is afraid to testify. When the bad guy (played by Christian Bale) gets out on bail, he hires a thug he met in jail (played by Jeffrey Wright) to find her and kill her. Shaft ends up quitting the force to look full time for this waitress and put the bad guy a way. And so it go, as just another typical cop film.

I haven't seen the original Shaft, so I can't compare the two. This film seemed to be trying for a hip black version of Dirty Harry. Instead they got something more in line with Low Down Dirty Shame or Mob Squad. Every character, including Shaft, is 1 dimensional. There are no character arches. The story is not only predictable, it is boring too. The level of excessive violence was cool maybe in the 80's, but in this... it just feels... well.. excessive. In this day and age, where we have serious police misconduct scandals in the nation two largest cities, it doesn't sit well to watch Shaft mistreat suspects especially while uniformed cops stand by and watch.

There are many decent actors in this and almost all are wasted. Christian Bale, Toni Collette, Vanessa Williams and the guy from HBO's OZ (sorry I can't remember his name) have almost nothing to do. Dan Hedaya actually has a role, but it is poorly developed. For example, Hedaya plays a bad cop and the only understanding we get for why is... twice he says Private school for my kids cost a lot'. Yeah, I'd risk my career and jail time and kill an innocent witness for that. Wouldn't you? Oh and the ending completely negates the purpose of the film.

The directing is bland. It was nice to look at, but the directing didn't make it cooler. Which is something it felt like they wanted to achieve. Instead it looked flat and contrived. Jackson was fine because he is so likeable no matter what he does. But he plays it by the book and we've seen this side of him before.

Really only two things stand out in the film: It is occasionally pretty funny and Jeffery Wright nails it. Wright takes a boring 1 dimensional character and gives it an edge. Somebody get him a better agent. D-Tox and this? Ride with the Devil was good, but nobody saw it. I want to see this guy in a great film, but I guess I will have to wait.

As for Shaft... catch this one on video.

Consider This... Segue Zagnut

Readers Talkback
comments powered by Disqus
    + Expand All
  • April 7, 2000, 8:03 a.m. CST

    I'm sure it'll be good anyway.

    by rjtapper

    Jackson + Singleton = good

  • April 7, 2000, 8:05 a.m. CST

    Go suck a dog's ass!

    by 24percent

    You haven't seen the first film. Save me the airfare and kill yourself. Even if the new film does suck, you are a true punk.

  • April 7, 2000, 8:09 a.m. CST

    theme song?

    by rctown

    Did they at least keep the theme song pretty much as is, or did they give it some rapped-up treatment to make it more radio friendly?

  • April 7, 2000, 8:31 a.m. CST

    Have you ever SEEN a blaxploitation flick?

    by Dr_Dolemite

    I can't believe you've never seen the original Shaft. How about Superfly? Sweet Sweetback? Dolemite? The Mack? Cotton Come to Harlem? Anything? There are specific rules a blaxplo flick has to follow for it to work. You CANNOT review blaxplo based on standard films, it'll always suck because it will always be too "over-the-top." From what you've described, it has it all. Big hero, fine women, flashy scenery, racists... what about a big car? And no one knows more about blaxploitation than Rudy Ray Moore, givin it up old school at http://www.dolemite.com

  • April 7, 2000, 8:46 a.m. CST

    The Dan Hedeya Role

    by Stephen Dedalus

    This is the role that demands that an actor play a crooked New York cop whose reasons for being crooked are obscure. Ever seen THE HURRICANE?

  • April 7, 2000, 9:23 a.m. CST

    Exactly When Will Singleton Run Out Of Chances?

    by mrbeaks

    I'll let his track record speak for itself. I am pulling for this film, if only for Sam the man. Hell, and Dan Hedeya, too. Who doesn't love that guy?

  • April 7, 2000, 9:24 a.m. CST

    "Truck Turner" is the man!

    by Uncapie

    Remake this film with Forest Whittaker in the Yaphett Kotto role, Nichelle Nichols reprises herself(Where else can you hear Uhura say, "Kill that mutha fuckin' Truck Turner son-of-a-bitch!" Starfleet would revoke her broadcaster's license.), Gary Coleman as the sidekick, "What 'cho talkin' 'bout, Truck?!" and Dick Miller as the "Bailbondsman." A nationwide search for Truck would be featured in Daily Variety and Hollywood Reporter.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:34 a.m. CST

    shut your mouth!

    by Eliot

    The reasons why Zagnut hate this movie are the exact reasons why it is going to kick ass! Sure, three dimensoinal characters are nice, but this is simply supposed to be a fun, super-cool actoin flick that brings it in hand over fist to Paramount! Look at the Wicked Witch in "The Wizard of Oz". She was pure evil, had one emotoin, and one goal in life. As one dimensionsal as you can get. It would have sucked if we saw her other side. She will always be remmebered in film even though she only had a few minutes of screen tie becuase she wa such an icon. Same with Belushi! I suppose Zagnut hated "Animal House" and "The Blues Bros." just becuase Belushi played a stupid, fun, cool guy who's only point in live was to be a walking party! These characters should be one dimensoinal! Shaft is, and should always be "one bad motha." I'm lad Mr. Rudin & Singelton didn't change it. "Shaft" isn't "Casablanca", and it shouldn't be. This is about fun, mindless action, not character development, complex story arcs, etc. "Shaft" is about kicking ass, and looking good doing it.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:36 a.m. CST

    Opinions

    by Jackass

    Stop letting other people's reviews form your opinion's. Wait unti the film comes out to form one. Just because one sap doesn't get it doesn't mean you won't.

  • Just as you can't expect too much of a kung fu flick, or else you'll miss out on all the fun. If you felt this movie was bad, and it may well turn out to be just that, you have to judge it in the context of WHAT IT IS. This would prove rather difficult if you have not seen the original, however. Alas, from what I hear about this movie, there is (as of yet) no sex in SHAFT. That's like a Bond movie without gadgets (or sex, for that matter)! That's why MY expectations are still low.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:40 a.m. CST

    Zagnut Responds

    by SegueZagnut

    RCTOWN - all the music on the film was temp. The music they were using was very 70's and fit the vibe well. DR DOLEMITE - it is true that I have not seen many blaxpo films. I have seen a few though. Several Rudy Ray Moore films including Dolemite. (a good friend of mine played Mr. White in The Devil's Son-in-law) However this version of Shaft did NOT have the feel of a blaxpo film.. it was designed like a Hollywood film. So I judge it that way. I think if you worship blaxpo films, then you will probably still like this film, but it doesn't have the hot girls. Really, there are no scantily clad women even. Williams spends what little screen time she gets, in a police uniform that shows nothing but her face. The scenery is not 'flashy'. It is just NYC. Shaft's buddy has a cool car I guess, but it isn't really used that way. Ultimately the version I saw was not over the top at all. If it had been, it probably would have been better. AZAZELLO27 - I get your point except a lot of films are 'excessively violent and somewhat muddled in terms of character development' That is not what set blaxpo apart. For me, I guess the big difference is attitude. It should have been 'over the top'.. but it wasn't. DEDALUS - Hedeya plays one of two cops who work together. We never find out what motivates the other cop and that is fine. I would rather they left it obscure with both of them. The film is funny enough and there is enough time before it comes out... maybe they will fix it. But, I doubt it.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:47 a.m. CST

    Wait, I know why he hated it...

    by Rolande

    There were no photon torpedoes or masturbatory homages to Star Wars or comic book superheroes.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:51 a.m. CST

    Vegas

    by SegueZagnut

    That's right VEGAS, there is no sex. In fact there isn't really even any hot women. Also I specifically admitted having not seen the original Shaft so everyone would know where I was coming from.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:56 a.m. CST

    The original Shaft...

    by Z-Man

    is nowhere near as cool as Superfly, Coffy, Foxy Brown, Cleopatra Jones, Blackbelt Jones, The Mack, or Truck Turner...and even those films can't hold a candle to the mighty DOLEMITE!!!

  • April 7, 2000, 9:56 a.m. CST

    Who's the cat that won't back down when there's danger all aroun

    by Sssnakepit

    I like a movie with great character development, beautiful script and sharp innovative direction . . . as much as the next guy, but I get a rush by suspending disbelief and watching mindless action/adventure. I'll probably go see Shaft as my escapist fare of the month. And to throw in a little kicker, I saw Sam L. on Letterman and he explained that the film is NOT a remake. Sam L. plays the nephew of Richard Roundtree's Shaft. Sam as Shaft? I say this Shaft will be a bad mother . . . (Shut my mouth).

  • April 7, 2000, 10:46 a.m. CST

    Straighten some things out

    by Goose42

    First off...Shaft was one of the first blaxpoitation films, and because of that, did not go so over the top as later ones that comae out. The original movie has its violence, but I would not say it is an overly violent movie. It develops the character of Shaft, who at the time, was rare in its day - a black detective that was just a badass. It was also a detective story, with Shaft actually having to figure things out. Now I know this concept has been lost on Hollywood, who would rather throw in some car chase instead of develop the plot a little more, but thems the breaks. I also want to point out that having Shaft's nephew (or whatever Sam's relation is to Shaft is) play a cop is such a slap in the face to the original material that I hope this doesn't even get released. Basically it suggests that Shaft sold out to The Man. This is disgusting. And once again I would like to point out that Shaft getting no women is like eating just the black pieces of an Oreo and scraping off the cream to throw down the drain. Blasphemy. And finally, Segue, I wouldn't read too much into the talkbacks...methinks studio plants are now lurking here to try and damage control bad reviews. Sad but in this day in age, very probable.

  • April 7, 2000, 11:11 a.m. CST

    Singleton is a hack

    by Drunkenfist

    ...and has been for most of his career. In a talented director's hands this film could be great. In Singleton's, well, I think I'll skip it.

  • April 7, 2000, 11:25 a.m. CST

    Black Shampoo

    by reni

    Does anyone remember that one?

  • April 7, 2000, 11:32 a.m. CST

    zagnut punk

    by Dash Reindeer

    If you have not seen the original, then WHAT THE FRAG DO YOU KNOW. AND TAKE THAT AFRO OFF, its ridiculous. Too Violent?? Man what planet do you live on monkey boy?

  • April 7, 2000, 11:45 a.m. CST

    Frag off you little fragger....

    by IAmJack'sUserID

    "What the frag"???? What kinda lame ass cursing is that?? Been playing Quake 3 a little too much in between elementary school and masturbating to Baywatch? So what if he's never seen the OG Shaft? I haven't either, but I'm waiting on getting the DVD.

  • April 7, 2000, 11:54 a.m. CST

    Did Somebody Say "Yaphet Kotto?"

    by mrbeaks

    I think that was you, Uncapie, in your admirable attempt to remind us all of the cinematic gift that is TRUCK TURNER. Actually, Kotto's done his fair share of action flicks, with my fave being ACROSS 110th STREET; a gritty cop drama that teams Yaphet with Anthony Quinn. Great if only for getting a feel for 70's NYC, and jamming out to the soulful Bobby Womack soundtrack.

  • April 7, 2000, 12:08 p.m. CST

    why he thinks this sucked

    by utz_world

    one key phrase: "i never saw the original..." Nuff said.

  • April 7, 2000, 12:11 p.m. CST

    Stop the presses: Jon Singleton film = crap.

    by LSHB

    I mean, really.

  • April 7, 2000, 12:32 p.m. CST

    Rules of Engagement sucked serious ass. Spoilers

    by Darth Siskel

    The movie had a plothole the size of Kentucky! What the hell happened to the terrorists on the roofs that were shooting at the soldiers for 10 minutes!!?? They must've teleported out. Why did NONE of Jackson's troops see any guns in the crowd, if every little bastard in the crowd had a gun !? Are we to believe after the soldiers mow down the crowd, the guns also teleport out? Did the soldiers shoot up the crowd, then shut their eyes and walk away ? How could they not see the guns??! RULES OF ENGAGEMENT was a sloppy piece of shit.

  • April 7, 2000, 1:09 p.m. CST

    "Tell 'em you've been hit by a truck! Mac Truck Turner!"

    by Uncapie

    Yaphet Kotto's death scene in "Truck Turner" was realistic and he portrayed "Harvard Blue" like a real bastard, but a smart one! And who could forget Issac Hayes' soundtrack? If you can find it, there's a great song on there called "Pursuit Of the Pimpmobile" which lasts nine minutes! Great music from a double record set! Don't remake any of these movies! Just enjoy the originals! Fucking Hollywood!

  • April 7, 2000, 1:20 p.m. CST

    wrinkly Shaft

    by Horus

    Isn't Jackson a little too old for the role.He's a good actor , but looks like his *Sex machine ,to all the chicks* days are behind him!.It could end up like something from *Gonna get you Sucka*!Also will they be using the original theme...or Bart and Lisa's cover version..that was magic.

  • April 7, 2000, 1:52 p.m. CST

    by Hinesy

    I don't care. Jackson can do no wrong in my book. He's a more likeable actor than say, Danzel because he obviously doesn't take himself as serious. He's cool and I can't see any other actor (other than Roundtree) portray Shaft.

  • April 7, 2000, 2:09 p.m. CST

    Alive with Pleasure!

    by KingMenthol

    Blaxp. flicks are super-cool. Over-the-top cool. The key is the delivery of the lines. If Sam and the rest don't deliver the lines with excess melodrama, it's not a blaxploitation movie. He can't be doing the Pulp Fic thang or the Jackie Brown thang again, that's not gonna work. I don't see how this kind of thing can work in this day & age of overproduction. I'll stay away and rent Superfly again, mothafucka. Watch out, Freddy.

  • April 7, 2000, 2:18 p.m. CST

    FRAGGIN all day long

    by Dash Reindeer

    I love folks who persist in talking shyte and have'nt even seen SHAFT and defend some no nothing wanker that tears the new one and the Blaxploition genere in general. I've never played quake but I used to read lobo. Waiting for the DVD means to me you seem like some perfectionist that has no genuine love for seeing and watching a film. Go rent these movies in this order: SHAFT SUPERFLY 3 THE HARD WAY THE MACK DOLOMITE (ANY BUT DISCO GODFATHER) BLACK BELT JONES ALL THE COFFY FLICKS SLAUGHTERS BIG RIP OFF TRUCK TURNER Then go ahead and repost and talk all the trash you like. Frag you fanboy!!

  • April 7, 2000, 2:22 p.m. CST

    Where did you get this guy?

    by Davross

    Haven't seen the original??!! "MOB" Squad? Let me get this straight. You are looking for a social commentary on current events in a remake of SHAFT? Bloody Hell!

  • April 7, 2000, 2:24 p.m. CST

    YOU TELL 'EM DAVEROSS

    by Dash Reindeer

    Yea take that you fraggin fraggers.

  • April 7, 2000, 2:45 p.m. CST

    Cut Zagnut Some Slack,.....

    by mrbeaks

    ..... or I'm gonna send Willie Green from the 4th Ward to deal with yo' cracker ass. Seriously, if Zagnut has, at least, seen DOLEMITE, I'll forgive his not seeing the original SHAFT, as well as the "Mob Squad" error. So, take that you no-business, born insecure, honky motherFUCKA!!!

  • April 7, 2000, 2:46 p.m. CST

    why is Hollywood afraid of black men having sex?

    by Fatal Discharge

    Maybe it's penis envy - bwahaha. It seems the topic is more taboo than homosexual sex. The last film where I can remember a black star in an erotic film was Denzel in MISSISSIPPI MASALA which was a great film but nobody saw it. How can you remake SHAFT and not make him a sex machine?

  • April 7, 2000, 3:02 p.m. CST

    Singleton's a GREAT director

    by rjtapper

    He has yet to do a bad film(did you bashers forget Rosewood?).The only thing is that he's never done a kind of straight forward entertainment film yet, but I have faith that he'll pull it off. And Higher Learning was an under-appreciated great, which had flaws, but was ANYTHING but stereotypical. In another director's hands, the skinhead character Remy would've been put out there as a hissable villain, but Singleton made him tragically sympathetic.

  • April 7, 2000, 3:29 p.m. CST

    Singleton's A Hack

    by mrbeaks

    Ask anyone who's ever worked with him. His behavior on the set is unprofessional (even making the papers here in NYC,) and his films are, without exception, cliched *and* stereotypical. HIGHER LEARNING? The skinhead character *was* a complete stereotype. He gets heckled by some black students, and all of a sudden, becomes a bigot. What's more, these hate organizations rarely surface on college campuses; tending to prey, instead, upon the uneducated. Had Singleton conducted an hour of research, he might've discovered this. Oh, and ROSEWOOD *is* a major achievement. When I saw that film back in '97, I was awestruck at the embarrassingly overt symbolism (Mr. Man,) the stock characters, and Singleton's inability to build tension. What's worse, Singleton couldn't even connect with the audience on a simple, visceral level, which was evident when the primarily black audience I saw it with *laughed* during a lynching scene. I know it sounds awful, but it happened, and not only at the screening I attended, but at others that my friends attended as well. But back to SHAFT..... if the film turns out to be a hit, the only way Singleton will direct the sequel will be over Scott Rudin's bloated dead corpse. The production went well over schedule due mostly to Singleton's inability to handle a large production. What's worse, he pissed off Jackson, who many say practically directed the film himself. That's why I'm rooting for the film. Sam Jackson has more than paid his dues, and deserves this franchise. I hope it will work, in spite of Singleton's unprofessional behavior.

  • April 7, 2000, 3:31 p.m. CST

    singleton is a hack

    by babydave

    as much as i hate to admit it (im an aspiring black screenwriter), singleton IS a hack at filmmaking. maybe he should just try to refine his writing or just sell stocks or something (talented director, he aint!).

  • April 7, 2000, 4:04 p.m. CST

    by fried samurai

  • April 7, 2000, 4:12 p.m. CST

    WHERE'S QUENTIN WHEN U NEED HIM ?

    by fried samurai

    singleton and carpenter, just how many chances are they gonna give these guys?

  • April 7, 2000, 4:42 p.m. CST

    Segue Zagnut was 100% correct

    by Dale Cooper

    Having seen the film, I can tell you that this film was totally accurate. There is no sex, which means it already lacks one of the key elements of the blaxsplotation films. The story was really bad and the ending did negate the whole thing. The only saving grace was Sam Jackson, but he didn't even get to fuck one female. What the hell is that??! He said on Letterman he was the sexually repressed nephew of Shaft. Who the fuck wants to see a sexually repressed Shaft?! The violence is cool and handled well, but nothing goes better with violence than some gratuitous sex. There is none. Not even a brief titty shot! See it at a matinee for Jackson.

  • April 7, 2000, 4:43 p.m. CST

    BUSTA BUSTA BUSTA

    by LOS GORDOS

    Hey Zagnut. SHAFTS buddy? That's Busta Rhymes you're talking about right. He does have a part in this movie? As Shafts buddy. Right? Don't you know who busta is? Sheesh. Too much violence -- well they had to make up for the lack of nudity and sex. They better pack the next one wall to wall with gratuitous nudity and fuckin'. Hollywoods become like some extended episode of the Brady Bunch. I say we put political correctness in a pillow case and drown it in the river once and for all!

  • April 7, 2000, 5:11 p.m. CST

    say it ain't so

    by theTemplar

    As I see it, Blaxploitation films were the original action films. Except they had plot and social consciousness (something lacking in '80s Ah-nult movies). These films were great! Singleton should not direct (even Rosewood was only ok, when it could have been good, even powerful). I would argue that Shaft was not a one dimensional character - but my argument could be a dissertation. At any rate, I'm afraid Singleton will replace social consciousness with trite stereotypes and PC crap (I fear this is why the sex is missing). Nonetheless, I'm still holding out some hope that Jackson will have forced this thing to live up to at least a good part of its potential. Zagnut, go see the original! It might change your mind, or it might even reenforce your present opinion. I would be interested to know how someone who has seen the original feels about the new.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:49 p.m. CST

    Doomed

    by TomReagan

    Remakes of cult hits never work, because as has already been suggested here, their popularity was never based on them being an actual quality production, but on that indefinable essence of the thing that everyone thought was so cool in the first place. Look at The Avengers for instance. Now they tried their darndest to try and recreate that show, but they couldn't do it. They put all the elements there, hired all the talent, homaged all the right bits, even got Macnee in a cameo, but they still failed miserably. It just didn't work. The same will happen with Shaft. They CAN'T recreate blaxpoitation, the era for that working has passed (and it seems like they're missing vital elements anyway, at least they TRIED with The Avengers). At the same time, it seems incredibly unlikely that this will be a good film in its own right. So what's the point? Shaft will probably still have a big opening because it's theme song is still so damn cool and will pull people in, but I think there are going to be some disapointed people leaving the theater.

  • April 7, 2000, 9:58 p.m. CST

    Hey, Frag boy....

    by IAmJack'sUserID

    The reason I'm getting the DVD is because I have a DVD player and I like OWNING my films and so that I can see the film in the best quality presentation currently available to the home-viewing public. If I have a DVD player, why would I see the VHS version? Lemme put it to you in a way that even you can understand: if you wanted to whack your weed and had to choose between porn or Harry's report from the Playboy mansion, which would you pick? Get it? Thought that would help you out...

  • April 8, 2000, 12:39 a.m. CST

    Did you even see this movie?

    by Dr.Wai

    I don't think this motherfucker saw "Shaft Returns". First, he doesn't even mention Busta Rhymns as having a part in the movie. Samuel L. Jackson was on tv and he said that Busta had a big role. Second, Samuel L. Jackson doesn't play Shaft. He plays Shaft's nephew. Richard Roundtree plays the role of Shaft. Third, I have read the screenplay for this movie and while it wasn't the best screenplay I've read it was a very good screenplay for a summer movie. It does have violence but whose to say it gratuatous? So I just want to say to this guy: Stop lying to people you stupid motherfucker!!! This movie is gonna rock and you know it. I just think that this guy hates Samuel L. Jackson so much that he had to bag on Shaft Returns. When you ACTUALLY see the movie then you can teel us if it sucks or not. FUCKER!!!

  • April 8, 2000, 1:09 a.m. CST

    more on Singleton & Higher Learning

    by rjtapper

    Here's the deal on Remy in Higher Learning, for whoever it was, who was TOTALLY wrong. I've seen this film over 20 times, and each time the Remy character becomes more rich. OK, as the film opens, he's just left home for college, and he's looking to make friends, and he presumably doesn't make friends easily. He gets rejected by Malik(the Omar Epps character), his roommates(Cube and Busta Rhymes), and even the frat he's desperate to join to have some sort of friendship and comradderie(sp?). The first, and only group that welcomes him in and shows him any friendship ARE the skinheads. Remy IS NOT a stereotypical racist skinhead. He goes alongwith what that group does because they're the only friends he has and he's scared of losing that.He even hauls that rifle to the rooftop at the climax in an effort to impress his new friends,not because he has any real desire to kill anyone.Its the influence of the people around him. I don't think Singleton's intention was to imply that every college campus in America is being overrun by neo-Nazi groups(I don't even think any of those other skinheads even attended the film's university). Remy is a tragic character in that film because his fate was just out of his control. He wasn't the type of guy to be able to get out of the situation he was in, and that's why he killed himself in the end, cuz he'd basically gone past the point of no return. As for Rosewood, the white characters ARE definitely played as charicatures, except for Michael Rooker's sheriff, who also couldn't control the situation he was in. Panther was a film that basically set the standard for almost comically sadistic white characters in black historical films(see The Hurricane for the latest example of that).And as for Singleton's so-called unprofessionalism, if Stanley Kubrick acted the same way he'd have been called "eccentric." What a filmmaker does off camera has nothing to do with what they put up on screen.

  • April 8, 2000, 1:51 a.m. CST

    another response

    by SegueZagnut

    The film I saw last night had an unfinished title sequence, but it called the movie only 'SHAFT' not 'Shaft Returns'. Busta Rhymes was in the movie, at least that is what it said on the pass. I don't know what Rhymes looks like, sorry. I assume he was Shaft's stoner buddy. He was fine. But just like everybody else, he was wasted. Richard Roundtree does play Jackson's uncle, and I believe they both went by the name Shaft. Roundtree's role is bigger than a cameo, but not much. I like Jackson. Jackie Brown, Pulp Fiction, 187, Time to Kill are all great performances. Die Hard 3 & Deep Blue Sea are both fun performances that he sells mostly on personality. I thought he sucked in The Negotiator & SW1. I hope that give enough perspective on how I feel about Jackson. Lastly, that was an awful lot of hate thrown my way just because you didn't like my review. You need to lighten up, it is only an opinion.

  • April 8, 2000, 5:56 a.m. CST

    You know that Shaft, he's one bad mother...

    by Vegas

    SHUT YOUR MOUTH! (but I was just going to say frag)

  • April 8, 2000, 6:28 a.m. CST

    Clifton Powell or Wesley Snipes as Shaft

    by malkolm

    Samuel Jackson is my favorite African-American actor, however I feel that he was miscast as Shaft. First off, he is too old, secondly and most importantly, Shaft was suave, sexy and still physically threatening. Samuel can play any role but he is not suave. Shaft's suaveness/coolness was the key factor in the sucess of the orignal movies. When Richard Roundtree entered a room in the films, you could understand why women would want him and men would fear him. Wesley Snipes has those qualities and even moreso Clifton Powell. For those who do not know him, he played Chris Tuckers cousin, the guy with the red suit in the bar in Rush Hour, the lawyer in Why do fools fall in love and the pimp who supported Laranz Tates girlfriend why he was in Viet Nam in Dead Presidents. I have watch the teaser of the new Shaft and if it is any representation of the finished product, John Singleton f____d Up!

  • April 8, 2000, 8:58 a.m. CST

    "A kinder, gentlier Shaft, for the 21st Century."

    by Uncapie

    "Gosh! Please stop that, you evil person! Now young lady; stop that! No sex until we're married! Tofu sandwich anyone?"

  • April 8, 2000, 9:13 a.m. CST

    Singleton

    by HorrorBiz777

    From what I heard of Singleton on set (and this is from Sam Jackson himself) Singleton would show up late at shoots still drunk from the night before. Sloppy filmmaking. A good director is the first one to get there and the last one to leave. Making a movie isn't fun, it's not a party. It's supposed to be hard and challenging. Once crew people start doing tequila shooters on set that's a bad sign. HB777

  • April 8, 2000, 2:23 p.m. CST

    TAFT!

    by Omega Red

    I'm Neil's neighbor....good neighbor....I feed his cat's while he's away....feed those kitties....

  • April 8, 2000, 9:36 p.m. CST

    You've Seen HIGHER LEARNING 20 Times???

    by mrbeaks

    Dear lord, man! What a colossal waste of time. You've spent more time analyzing that piece of shit than Singleton spent thinking the damn thing out. As for comparing Singleton to Kubrick..... well, that's just idiotic. Kubrick never hit on extras, or showed up late to the set. Please read my comments more carefully next time before you choose to make an ass of yourself on the talkback.

  • April 9, 2000, 12:29 a.m. CST

    I happen to really like Higher Learning

    by rjtapper

    For me, its not a waste of time to have seen it 20 or so times, because its one of my favorites, one I not only like, but admire. I know that the film wasn't well liked by critics, but it did fairly well in theaters, and had even received applause at the end of one of the screenings I saw(that's only happened with a couple films I've seen in my whole life). I don't sit up nights analyzing the film, but I know it very well, so I'm able to really understand it better and I DO feel the characters and story are better than you give them credit for being. Singleton's not the greatest director in terms of style, but his films have a lot of heart to them. As for the Kubrick comparison, I wasn't really comparing them as directors, since they're obviously not similar at all. I just don't think what a director(or a star) does off-camera matters as much as what they do ON camera, and I just feel Singleton has done good films so far, and that's a trend I see continuing with Shaft.

  • April 9, 2000, 3:03 a.m. CST

    Wasted Post

    by Alex De Large

    i don't have much to say...just that the thought of Shaft...and i don't care if he's a nephew or whatever, he's still A Shaft goddammit...not getting any is pretty much a waste of film. one more thing, Dr.Wai. just...just think before you waste everyone's time like that. now i'm going to take my own advice and go find the girl with the groovy boobs.-Alex

  • April 9, 2000, 5:35 p.m. CST

    Creative Screenwriting review

    by Samthelion

    Yeah and just for the record about that review, Dooval, my teacher here at Mississippi State wrote that article. Read it, its good. I'm soon to be a contributing reviewer for them, so I'm just giving it this plug. btw. Character ARC, not arches!

  • April 10, 2000, 12:38 a.m. CST

    shaft returns

    by pedro44

    Yeah I have a relative who was at the Shaft screening and word is that they all loved it. it really delivered. I dont know what that means in teh grand scheme of things but I trust the relatives opinion cause he usually isnt wrong but it delivered at all levels

  • April 10, 2000, 9:46 a.m. CST

    JRKerr-- You Are Full Of SHIT!!!!!

    by The Monitor

    I'm not even Mr. Tibbs, the one you attempted to disrespect, but I definitely took offense at some SILLY, ASS WHITE BOY such as yourself trying to tell a Black person what he or she is about because you happened to read "The Autobiography Of Malcolm X" two times or whatever (you were probably forced to by some college professor)... there are Blacks all across this world and wearing a dashiki or knowing the meaning of ONE African phrase and/or word (NEWSFLASH, DUMBASS-- there are hundreds upon hundreds of different languages indigeneous to the African continent-- far more than Europe, for example-- and even a native African doesn't completely grasp them all) isn't the total Black experience... who the fuck are you to say that Bill Cosby, Sidney Potier, and Darius Rucker are Uncle Toms?!?!? Have you EVER walked in the skin of a Black person, and struggled against the type of shit IDIOTIC people like you spew towards them damn near every fuckin' day?! You don't have to answer that question numbskull because I KNOW you haven't-- check yourself on your narrow-minded views, asshole-- or watch Shango strike you down where you stand-- look up that particular reference, even though you should know what it means already since you KNOW SO MUCH about Africa and ALL it's different peoples and customs(insert sarcasm at will)...

  • April 10, 2000, 3:34 p.m. CST

    Confused!

    by malkolm

    How did a review of a preview of a movie escalate into racial name calling. The United States is in trouble! People cannot have mature, intelligent dialogs without it turning ugly. Those of you that contributed to these pathetic dialogs have serious mental issues!