Published on 14 Apr 2015 | about 1 year ago
A black soldier returns from fighting for the Union in the Civil War only to find out that his mother has been murdered by a gang of white thugs. He becomes a bounty hunter, determined to track down and kill the men who killed his mother.
Blaxploitation figure Williamson starred in and wrote this western revenge saga which bears a passing resemblance to the equally cheap "Cry Blood, Apache". He plays a returning Civil War soldier coming to meet his mother Jackson who is a domestic for Hendrick and Venus, a farmer and his mail-order wife. When a gaggle of dusty outlaws stops in for some drinks and vittles, they begin to eye Venus and a scuffle breaks out in which Jackson is killed. When Williamson finds out that his mother is dead, he sets out to systematically eliminate the quintet of killers who, incidentally, have taken Venus with them for comfort. Like many films before and after this one, a lone man stalks and kills a series of bad guys, always finding a way to get each one alone. This wouldn't be so bad if the killings had been handled in any sort of creative or arresting way. Williamson cuts a nice figure, all in black, against the dusty landscape and he's intimidating to be sure. Unfortunately, with an exception or two, he makes the other actors look like they just got the script seconds before the cameras rolled. Hendrick does okay with his small role and Vega isn't bad as a woman who briefly distracts and aids Williamson during his quest. Bartlett, as the ringleader of the villains, is nice to look at, but has no remarkable personality to offer. Willingham plays a character named Weasle and is excruciating to listen to, always screeching and laughing obnoxiously. The worst, however, is Venus. It's impossible to imagine that the sounds she emits through her voice-box could come from a human being and not a marsupial who is being dangled over a vat of boiling sulfur and oil. Her character is very badly conceived to begin with, but she sinks it even further with her thoroughly inept portrayal. By the time she's ready to be rescued, the audience has already been praying for most of the movie that she'll be shot in the head! Whoever's idea it was to make the kidnap victim completely unbearable should have been straightened out right away! The other major debit of the film is the agonizing musical score. The same six-note sequence is played, with an occasional variation, over and OVER and O-V-E-R throughout the course of the movie! Every once in a while, something else is played, but mostly it's this same droning, horrid bit of music that threatens to continue forever. Williamson makes this passable, but it surely isn't good.
Black Rider / Joshua (1976) Full Length Sexy Spaghetti Western Films