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Shaft (2000)

June. 15,2000
| Adventure Action Thriller Crime

New York police detective John Shaft arrests Walter Wade Jr. for a racially motivated slaying. But the only eyewitness disappears, and Wade jumps bail for Switzerland. Two years later Wade returns to face trial, confident his money and influence will get him acquitted -- especially since he's paid a drug kingpin to kill the witness.


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It's Difficult NOT To Enjoy This Movie


Simple and well acted, it has tension enough to knot the stomach.

Casey Duggan

It’s sentimental, ridiculously long and only occasionally funny


This is one of the best movies I’ve seen in a very long time. You have to go and see this on the big screen.


Remakes do work occasionally, case in point Shaft, John Singleton's update of the 1971 Blacksploitation movie that starred Richard Roundtree as the title character. Roundtree gets a part in this one as well, playing the uncle of Samuel L. Jackson's title character, John Shaft.It's the perfect role for Jackson, lashings of cool and menace, on his bulky shoulders dose the film easily rest. Plot finds Shaft turning in his badge after the law proves useless to let racist murderer Walter Wade Junior (Christian Bale a sneering villain but awesome looking in a tux) out on the streets. Shaft vows to bring Wade to justice, by any means necessary. Though he also has other things on his plate, namely Latino drug lord Peoples Hernandez (Jeffrey Wright a riot) and some less than honourable police officers.The screenplay is a little trite, but as an action movie, one with the coolness and sparky humour, it really hits the required spots of those just after such easy minded fare. The support cast is a roll call of sound performers with the likes of Vanessa Williams, Dan Hedaya and Toni Collette fronting up, while the awesome ebullience of Busta Rhymes is very infectious.Isaac Hayes gloriously famous theme tune is still in place, pumped up by composer David Arnold, which ensures the feel of the original isn't lost, and Donald E. Thorin's photography is pin sharp and in turns gorgeous (night shots) and streetwise gritty. Shaft, the 2000 version, still bad-ass and sadly under appreciated. 7/10


This movie should really rock--John Singleton juicing up the classic '70s Shaft vibe with Samuel Jackson set in modern day New York. Throw in Christian Bale and quite a few cameos from the original Shaft, Richard Roundtree, and how could you have anything other than a winner? Sorry to say, the only '70s vibe this movie captures is that of an utterly mediocre '70s made-for-TV movie. Unfortunately, being set in modern day New York, you don't even get the nostalgia of '70s cars and stuff. This movie is just a total disappointment. I was watching this misfire with other people and kept hoping in vain that it would get better as it went along, but if I were alone I would have stopped this ordeal midstream. (I should be honest and note that the two other viewers who had no prior knowledge of Blaxploitation films, Shaft and Richard Roundtree, etc., and thus had no hopes, expectations, or preconceived biases considered it passable entertainment.) My take is, ask yourself if you want to watch a totally run-of-the-mill vintage made-for-TV action movie, basically just updated by adding a whole lot of swearing (although I doubt this bothers too many people nowadays, and I could personally care less)--I really, really don't. I would much rather watch old Columbo or Rockford episodes. When I think how well Quentin Tarantino did with Jackie Brown, a similar project, this movie just looks lame, lame, lame.

Johan Dondokambey

The story builds it's crime case well, keeping the mystery element existing while revealing new details and small surprises along the way. Yet it kind of throws back at how the focus character seems to be so resourceful and calm at what he's doing. I think the movie should have a more solid backgrounder on how he can do these things. The action side is not that good at all, having too much close up shots and cuts from shot to shot just don't seem to add to the suspense. The acting side also doesn't really offer something. Samuel L. Jackson's acting is surprisingly slightly a bit his own standard here, grinning too much at the wrong times. Christian Bale's upper lip definitely wrecks up his expressions all the entire time. Vanessa Williams can add a color to the story but that's just it.


You'd think Samuel L. Jackson starring in a remake of Shaft would be the coolest thing ever. Seeing as Jackson and the character are two badass mother-shut yo mouths. But the end result is disappointing.The plot revolves around Shaft, played by Jackson, seeking to take down the son of a wealthy and powerful man. The son is played by Christian Bale, and the reason Shaft is after him is because he murdered a black man out of racial hate. But he managed to escape prison time and fled to Switzerland. Shaft gets sick,of the injustice and hands in his badge, taking a vigilante approach. His only hope is finding the lone witness of the murder and convince her to take the stand.Here's the film's main problem. The actions he takes are not protected by the law. The cops are even helping him, and no consequences are paid. True, you want him to win, but you can't overlook he is breaking the law. The original Shaft was more of a lone wolf. Shaft here can't seem to do anything without help.The films villains are forgettable. As good as Bale is, he's hardly there and is out of the majority of the action. Jeffrey Wright as a Hispanic gangster emerges as the main villain and is utterly uninteresting. A great villain should make you like him, even if you hate him. I don't even remember the character's name.But I think the biggest downfall is casting Richard Roundtree in a reprisal of his original Shaft role and waste him. He's pretty much a cameo and the film ends with a promise of the original badass mother-shut yo mouth kicking some ass, but we don't get to see it.The one thing this film needed was to be cool. It's unfortunately not.Shaft 4/10