It Played Detroit #2 – The Guy From Harlem 1/20/78

It Played Detroit #2 - The Guy From Harlem 1/20/78

In the second of the series of films that were from the lesser known reaches of the Exploitation world, it’s the Guy From Harlem! Rene Martinez Jr. of Super Soul Brother fame (well, to Florida Cult Movie fans at least) Directed this very low budget film from Florida featuring at least a nice soundtrack with a fine theme song in support and since appearing on a few budget DVDs, especially Mill Creek’s Martial Arts set a few years back. it’s been in many favorite bad film lists. Filled with “Touch Fu”, the PI’s many moves on the lady he’s supposed to protect “For Security Reasons”, flubbed lines, and wooden acting that ensured most of the cast would not be going anywhere apart from a couple, this seriously gave fans of the fan created world of Regional Film something to cherish with it’s loud Florida locations taking center stage – It wants to be Street Tough, but it’s really Suburban Soft.

Actually, I have found that watching it cropped at 1:85 gives the impression that the videos we have saw were presented in Open Matte, but then again a lot of the framing is very off center…still, try it. It may not make the film any better, but at least it will chop off a lot of the head room we associate the film with.

Although no awards are given to Loye Hawkins’ acting as Player PI Al Conners, some may wonder what would have happened if this would have had more money in the production as he fits well in the role despite lacking that extra punch needed to create a serious character. As Ms. Ashanti, the African princess he’s protecting while forgetting the hands off rule, Patricia Fulton’s alright here as well in a local stage production kind of way. To be fair, it’s really most of the supporting cast that gives this film the quality free fall as well as the slightly clumsy camera work and very low budget sound.

Colleen Martinez as the masseuse who is the first to try and attack the princess clearly screams out “I’m with the Director” and even if Wayne Crawford went onto a long Acting career after this, his performance as Big Daddy showed very little promise here although this film is a case where the Production can also be blamed. The co-plot of Conners trying to protect a girl from being kidnapped by Big Daddy is thrown in, but not very well, and the location settings in what seems to be loud hotel rooms – a case of using Porno style film making without the Porn – is very out of step with Urban Action. Too much Sunshine, not enough urban

Still, the prize for Film Saving goes out to the music by The Brand New Review. Just hear the song in the You Tube and hear what I mean…and you can dig it!

On 1/20/78, this played the Adams and Norwest with Across 110’th Street playing as the B.

This seriously should be on Blu Ray!


~ by screen13 on September 14, 2013.

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