The Black Gestapo/Review
From The Grindhouse Cinema Database
For my money The Black Gestapo is one of the best low budget Blaxploitation genre films of the 1970s. The real reason the film is so enjoyable is because of the script by Lee Frost and Wes Bishop who co-wrote and produced several classics of Exploitation cinema like The Thing With Two Heads, Policewomen, Chain Gang Women and Dixie Dynamite.
The story revolves around a black empowerment group called The People's Army who have formed a special neighborhood program to keep out white corruption as well as drug dealers and pimps. When the People's Army begin to be bullied by white gangsters, things start to get really out of hand. The two main leaders of The People's Army are General Ahmed (Rod Perry) and Colonel Kojah (Charles H Robinson). Ahmed is the level headed Martin Luther King personality and Kojah is the more militant Black Panther personality. Throughout the film, the two clash several times.
The white gangsters begin to cause more troubles for the local black folks and they openly harass the black women. One night, two of them beat and rape a female friend of The People's Army. This is where Col. Kojah leaves the rules of the game behind and he pays a visit to one of the white rapists. This guy is taking a bath and about eight soldiers come into the bathroom and surround him. When Colonel Kojah walks in and unfolds a straight razor you know what's coming next. It's one bloody mess.
The People's Army starts as a law abiding, honest force for good in the neighborhoods, but Colonel Kojah begins making it apparent his intentions are to create an army more in line with Hitler's SS. Instead of keeping the white extortionists out, Kojah just takes their place. These guys don't even help their own people anymore, they take their income and help keep the drug dealers and pimps making money to fund their organization which is based outside the city in a rural Army mansion/compound. The new Black Gestapo may be black power facists but they certainly don't discriminate against having white women around! When Ahmed finds out about Kojah's new organization, he knows he has to do something about it. He pays a visit and things get heated when he sees how the new faction is operating. Now Ahmed knows that he not only has to battle the oppressive white thugs, but his old friend Kojah as well.
The main reason I love this film is because even when theres no action scenes taking place, the great dialogue by Lee Frost and Wes Bishop completely fills in the gaps. All the characters are interesting as well. The white gangsters come off as total sex crazed clowns that have no rulebooks until The Black Gestapo steps in and begin knocking them off one by one. There's a great sequence in the film where one of the white gangsters gets pushed off the road by a car full of white girls who belong to the Black Gestapo. The car rolls down a hill and when the guy inside miraculously survives, his first reaction is to put his sunglasses back on! Gotta look cool even in a car crash! Meanwhile, Kojah and his men are outside and they open fire on the guy until he throws out all the money he has collected from the black stores he extorts. Now if you look closely, this guy is laying down underneath a car but when he tosses out the bags they fly up a hill about 30 feet. It's really funny.
If you're a fan of Grindhouse cinema, I can safely say that this film won't dissapoint you. It may be a grade Z low budget exploitation film but it's still highly entertaining!!
Peter Roberts is the co-founder/editor-in-chief of the Grindhouse Cinema Database (GCDb) and contributor to the GCDb's sister site Furious Cinema. A Massachusetts native, he is an avid film fan that has been immersed in the world of entertainment and pop culture his entire life. He holds an AS with Highest Honors in Communications and Interactive Media Design.