• Introduction by

    Maya Raiford Cohen is a curatorial intern at BAMPFA.


Richard Roundtree, Moses Gunn, Gwenn Mitchell, Christopher St. John,

Superbly directed by Gordon Parks (who makes a Hitchcockian onscreen appearance), Shaft was one of the seminal black dramas of the 1970s and is notable for its mesmerizing, Oscar-winning Isaac Hayes score, seamless action sequences, the uniformly fine acting of the film’s ensemble, and an absorbing script about the Mafia abduction of a Harlem mob boss’s daughter. Richard Roundtree surprised the critics with his complex portrayal of the confident black private eye Shaft, capable of holding his own with a white police detective, or going eyeball-to-eyeball with formidable Harlem underworld king Bumpy Jonas.

Doris Worsham
  • John D. F. Black
Based On
  • the novel by Ernest Tidyman

  • Urs Furrer
Print Info
  • Color
  • 35mm
  • 100 mins
  • Warner Bros. Classics