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With: Jim Kelly, Rudy Ray Moore
Written by: Rudy Ray Moore, etc.
Directed by: Al Adamson, Robert Tai
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 192
Date: 03/18/2013

Kung Fu Theater (2005)

2 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

I'm Talkin' 'bout Black Samurai

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

This double-feature DVD set includes two African-American kung-fu films: Al Adamson's Black Samurai and Rudy Ray Moore's Shaolin Dolemite. The latter is merely a "comically" re-dubbed kung fu movie with new footage of Rudy Ray Moore inserted throughout, but Black Samurai (1977) is a vintage classic of "B" movie luster. Director Adamson (Satan's Sadists, Dracula vs. Frankenstein) was one of the most notorious filmmakers of the 1960s and 70s underground, drive-in period (he was murdered in 1995). He had very little talent for filmmaking and even less for martial arts choreography, but that didn't stop him from putting a great deal of gusto into this Enter the Dragon-like film about a secret agent (Jim Kelly) infiltrating a crime syndicate to set things right. It's slow and heavy on the bad dialogue, but Kelly (Enter the Dragon) is so cool he appears to be acting in a different movie. A number of intentional laughs make this one worth checking out -- unlike Shaolin Dolemite, which commits the sin of trying to be funny and failing.

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