Jiving-ass brothers ought to stand quaking in their snakeskin loafers for Scot Sanders’ latest creation. Sick of ‘The Man’ infecting the ghettos with smack and suspicious malt liquor, local legend and bad ass mofo Black Dynamite to grab his nunchucks and kick some seventies booty.
Inspired by a photo taken of Michael Jai White in the seventies, director Sanders has taken a trip back to a childhood of low budget kung fu action, cheap special effects and over exaggerated characters to produce a spoof of seventies blaxpoitation movies.
Taking all the glaring clichés of shows like the A-Team, Black Dynamite spoofs but stays in character without trying too hard. In fact it hardly lifts a pimped out ring finger, executed by a sensible choice of referencing the entire decade of movie style rather than singling out a different film for each reference.
Packed full of action while jiving a thin line on slapstick, it kicks booty (White is a black belt martial artist in real life) but still leaves in obvious fake punches and clumsy editing for comic effect.
What puts Black Dynamite above other spoofs is it doesn’t suffer from the same recycled gags that let others down. Its quick fire delivery of one liners are witty and abundant, and the sense of invincible antihero is exaggerated to the point that Dynamite can shoot his enemies while looking the other way.
Michael Jai White as Dynamite fits his character exceptionally well as he skips between being a pistol wielding, misogynistic BAMF and a softly spoken lady’s man, while comedy veterans will appreciate Arsenio Hall’s appearance as Tastey Freeze.
Shot entirely on Kodak Super 16 film, Black Dynamite has a warm, contrasting visual style that helps complement its ludicrous personalities. These analogue effects give the film a sense of charm, complete with shaky manual zooms and “Dynamite!” jingles.
Adrian Younge’s soulful Superfly inspired soundtrack is another asset that fits in seamlessly and sounds imitates so authentic you won’t realise its an original score until you hear the vocalist’s falsetto voice referencing the action taking place on screen!
At 85 minutes, Black Dynamite may end a little too soon. Instead try to think of it as more of an feature-length Murder She Wrote with afro picks than a blockbuster and a laugh a minute film that audiences will enjoy as an alternative to spoof franchises like Scary Movie.
Can you turkeys dig it? Yes you can.