"Shaft's cool, but I'm cooler!"
I always had one problem with the theme from "Shaft."
It talks about John Shaft like he is the one and only sex machine
with the ladies. Really, though, the hot chicks singing the chorus
should whisper "Shaft! And Filthy!" because I can give
that bad motherfucker a run for his money. Ladies, I have it
"Shaft" is a pretty good movie, and an even better
opportunity for us to see once and for all who is the baddest
motherfucker of them all. Is it Shaft or is it me? Let's take
Sex: We're told that Shaft is a sex machine, but I
rode more bone-pony this past weekend than he did. Despite the
song's promise, Shaft is only seen during the credits buckling
his belt while a couple screw under a dim blue light. Maybe it's
supposed to be Shaft humping the broad, but I couldn't tell for
And I know for a fact I took Mrs. Filthy to monkey heaven
just the other morning. For the rest of the movie, Shaft is never
seen laying pipe. He offers one bartending broad a taste of his
"L.D." which I guess stands for Little Dick. So, he
and I are even on that count. Overall in the sex category, the
score is Filthy One, Shaft Zero. I'm actually disappointed with
the absence of fucking and nudity and attractive portrayals of
Pursuit of Justice: Jackson is a bad motherfucker,
no doubt. He is a mean son of a bitch who knows right and wrong,
and I loved him. He doesn't let anyone get away with any shit.
In the movie, Jackson knows a white-bread rich fuck (Christian
Bale) killed a black kid and is going to get away with it. He
steps in, goes around the law, marshals his forces and brings
the asshole to justice. Jackson and Bale race to reach the murder's
lone witness first. Bale, with the help of drug dealer Jeffrey
Wright, wants her dead. Jackson wants her to testify.
In the same situation, I would also take a balls-out approach.
If I could put some rich asshole behind bars if he didn't kill
me first, I would pretend I never saw anything, was never involved
and then try to forget it all by hiding in my basement, drinking
Schlitz malt liquor, watching Zalman King's "Red Shoes Diaries"
and masturbating . To his discredit, Shaft stretches out his
pursuit of justice by with all sorts of characters and plotting
that are irrelevant or stupid. For example, while I would go
straight to my basement and jerk off, Shaft has to deal with
crooked cops that are annoying and don't really fit the story.
This category is close, but I'll give the nod to Shaft.
Charisma: Jackson's got a shitload. He is a total badass
and fun to watch because he blows right by the conventions of
cool. Normally, the assfucks in Hollywood think Ben Stiller in
a leather jacket is cool, but Jackson's Shaft has shits cooler
than Stiller. So do I. Jackson is almost entirely the focus of
"Shaft" and when he's onscreen it's alive. His yellow,
angry eyes, his sweaty bald head, and his scowl are all worthy
of praise. When he's not on screen, the flick feels like a bad
episode of "Law and Order."
I admit I don't have a lot of charisma. What I have is a bad
attitude, and that isn't so much cool as it is something to show
off during Def Leppard air-guitar solos at the Arvada Tavern.
I get in just as many fights as Jackson, but I wonder later if
maybe I was wrong, maybe that wasn't my can of beer, after all.
Give a big edge to Shaft here. Current score, Shaft Two, Filthy
Marksmanship: I win this on disqualification because
this movie is full of shit. Shaft kills about forty people, and
with 80% accuracy. The movie is insecure with its hero and it
thinks it can make him cooler by leaving a trail of dead bodies
behind him. The shootouts are well staged, but Jackson is fucking
cool enough that he could miss sometimes. I say, lose the bodies
and give us the booties. For the record, I have shot guns twice
in my life. The second time I hit a bird with a bee-bee and that
was the end of my killing ways. The score is tied.
Employment: Jackson is one of those guys whose a cop
but he never does his job, like telling my neighbor to stop pissing
in his backyard where everyone can see him. He's a cop only in
name. And he quits the force halfway through the flick. Why he's
a cop to begin with never really makes much sense, especially
since he never behaves like one. It's just another way for the
screenwriters to pad this thing out to 97 minutes. Me, I'm employed
by Family Dollar, and there is no doubt I need to work there.
I get free Little Debbies and watch the $99 televisions during
the night shift. Give the category to me, and I take the lead
three to two.
Ride: Jackson's got a mid-80s Chevy Monte Carlo SS.
I think it's fucking cool that the movie has the balls to give
him a shitty ride like that, instead of giving him a Lincoln
or a Jag. It proves he's a legitimate cop. It would have been
fucking funny if they gave him a Chevy Citation X11. I drive
a 1963 Ford Galaxie 500, not some cherried out muscle car, but
a beat to hell fastback that cops pull me over in just to hassle
me. I'd say this category is a draw.
Enemies: Christian Bale is just an unpleasant screen
presence. There is something about him that I cant stand, and
I think it's his smugness. He plays the one-dimensional rich
asshole to perfection, but the character is underwritten and
laughable. Jeffrey Wright, though, is so fucking good as Peoples
Hernandez that Shaft is going to win this category on his strength
alone. Wright plays the not-too-bright but ambitious Puerto Rican
drug dealer with aggressive glee. He kills with an ice-pick,
but he also gets excited when he meets people he's seen on TV.
My worst enemy is Tony, the fucking stoner who used to piss
in the trash cans at the Ralston Amoco. He's no Jeffrey Wright.
My other enemy is the fucking bitch that runs the Arvada Lanes
and always turns my lane off in the middle of a game because
she says I yell too much. Fuck her, I paid my $2.25 a game. She's
a pain in the ass, but she's probably not going to kill anyone.
Score this category for Shaft, and we're even.
Friends: Shaft's got a lot of uninteresting friends.
That would be okay if the movie didn't make us spend so much
time with them. Just like in every "good cop" movie
I have ever seen, they throw Shaft a surprise party at a bar.
Jesus Popping Cherries Christ, what's the deal with cops and
If they made a movie out of my life, you can bet this sort
of shit would be edited out. Every drunk I ever put my arms around
to keep from falling down would not be shown. Other than those
drunks and my dogs, though, I am pretty much friendless. But
no friends are just as good as hanging out with fucking losers.
I'll call this a draw.
Personal Growth: In general, not a single character
changes from the beginning to the end of this movie. Shaft is
always a bad ass, and I was never worried that he would lose.
He's too fucking cool. Every other character is the same at the
end of the movie as the beginning. No development, just bland
I grow and learn every week. For example, just this week I
learned that using Mrs. Filthy's credit card to buy tires without
her permission is a stupid thing to do and results in being chased
through the house by an angry woman holding hot curlers. I have
grown more than Shaft. And I win this category.
The final tally shows the winner is me. I'm a fucking
stud and I'm a badder motherfucker than Shaft. But Shaft is pretty
fucking cool and he gets three fingers, mostly for Jackson's
and Wright's performances.
One other note: this is the first movie Hollywood has made
in a long time about blacks and whites that accepts the differences
in a real way. It's doesn't feel like it was made by a bunch
of sorry-ass white executives being all apologetic and it doesn't
take one side or another. Of course, both the whites and blacks
kill about a thousand Puerto Ricans, but as we all know, Hollywood
still has a lot to learn.