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Detroit 9000 (1973)

Cast: Hari (Harry) Rhodes, Hari (Harry) Rhodes, Davis Roberts, more...
Director: Arthur Marks, Arthur Marks
    see all cast/crew...
Studio: Miramax
Genre: Action, Blaxploitation, Erotica
Running Time: 107 min.
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

Titled Detroit Heat for video release, this blaxploitation flick concerns two Motor City detectives (Hari Rhodes, Alex Rocco) on the trail of a gang of thieves who attacked a political rally. Noted blaxploitation fan Quentin Tarantino sponsored a theatrical re-release in 1998, with a video reissue following. ~ John Bush, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

'70s relic that should have stayed buried by Lastcrackerjack May 9, 2006 - 4:30 PM PDT
0 out of 1 members found this review helpful
Directed by Arthur Marks before he helmed "Bucktown" and "Friday Foster", "Detroit 9000" owes more to an episode of "Law & Order" than it does a goofy "Blaxploitation" flick. Orville Hampton's above average screenplay makes a decent attempt to deal with the politics and race relations of Detroit circa 1973. Shot on location, this police procedural features a good deal of local scenery and mid-seventies Motown atmosphere as well.

The movie was re-released by Miramax under Quentin Tarantino's Rolling Thunder banner, which sought to bring cult items from the '70s into the limelight. But what Tarantino does, instead of showing how great the movie was, is to show how movies, even B-movies, have changed for the better. Without access to an especially savvy director, capable actors, quality equipment or much in the manner of production value, "Detroit 9000" plays like a relic that should have stayed buried.

As a director, Marks goes out of his way not to be innovative. During the wildly overblown foot chases and shootouts that climax the film, Marks throws in a couple of handheld, point-of-view shots that are kinetic, but his other 105 minutes of film lacks this funky vibe.

The cast is pretty bland across the board. Rhodes and Rocco never develop much in the way of chemistry and are essentially going through the motions of the plot. Comparing their work to Gene Hackman & Roy Schneider's vice cops in "The French Connection" is a demonstration of how much energy this cast lacks. Vonetta McGee, one of the more alluring leading ladies of the '70s, is on hand as a prostitute who holds the key to locating the robbers, but doesn't do anything memorable.

Luchi de Jesus' musical score stands out, though the film lacks any kind of theme song to put it on par with the great entries of the "Blaxploitation" genre.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.08)
13 Votes
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Quentin Tarantino's Rolling Thunder Pictures
In 1995 Tarantino formed Rolling Thunder Pictures, a production company bringing independent, foreign and exploitation films that he felt should be more readily available. The company closed in 1998 when Miramax pulled support due to poor sales.

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