Big screen classics

Shaft

Shaft investigates a Harlem racketeer, while simultaneously searching for the man’s kidnapped daughter.

Image from Shaft

USA 1971
Dir Gordon Parks
With Richard Roundtree, Moses Gunn, Gwenn Mitchell, Christopher St John
100min
35mm
Certificate 15

Renowned photojournalist Gordon Parks’ second film as director boasts a fine performance by Roundtree as private eye John Shaft, investigating the activities of a Harlem racketeer who hires him to find his kidnapped daughter. Ernest Tidyman’s original story had a white protagonist: Parks’ decision to cast an African American – along with Isaac Hayes’ memorable music – made the film an influential success.