The Black Gestapo (1975)

R | 90 mins | Drama | 7 May 1975

Director:

Lee Frost

Producer:

Wes Bishop

Cinematographer:

Derek Scott

Editor:

Joanna Terbush

Production Designer:

Richard Schuyler

Production Company:

Saber Productions
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HISTORY

Ghetto Warriors was an alternate title for the film, according to the 9 May 1975 LAT review and publicity materials found in AMPAS library files.
       Black-and-white newsreel footage of marching Nazi soldiers precedes the opening credits.
       A 27 Feb 1975 HR news brief announced that Bryanston Pictures had acquired U.S. distribution rights to The Black Gestapo, which was shot in Los Angeles, CA, according to a 31 Mar 1975 Box item and the 7 Apr 1975 Box review.
       Critical reception was largely negative. The 14 Apr 1975 DV described the film’s “reactionary political message” as “offensive,” and, in her 9 May 1975 LAT review, Linda Gross deemed it “ugly blaxploitation cliche.” ... More Less

Ghetto Warriors was an alternate title for the film, according to the 9 May 1975 LAT review and publicity materials found in AMPAS library files.
       Black-and-white newsreel footage of marching Nazi soldiers precedes the opening credits.
       A 27 Feb 1975 HR news brief announced that Bryanston Pictures had acquired U.S. distribution rights to The Black Gestapo, which was shot in Los Angeles, CA, according to a 31 Mar 1975 Box item and the 7 Apr 1975 Box review.
       Critical reception was largely negative. The 14 Apr 1975 DV described the film’s “reactionary political message” as “offensive,” and, in her 9 May 1975 LAT review, Linda Gross deemed it “ugly blaxploitation cliche.”
More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
31 Mar 1975.
---
Box Office
7 Apr 1975
p. 4769.
Daily Variety
14 Apr 1975.
---
Hollywood Reporter
27 Feb 1975.
---
Los Angeles Times
9 May 1975.
---
Variety
5 Mar 1975.
---
Variety
16 Apr 1975
p. 23.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
Saber Productions Presents
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Exec prod
WRITERS
Scr
Story
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Lighting
ART DIRECTOR
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Ed asst
SET DECORATOR
MUSIC
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod asst
STAND INS
Stunt coord
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Ghetto Warriors
Release Date:
7 May 1975
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 7 May 1975
Physical Properties:
Sound
Color
Duration(in mins):
90
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

The People’s Army, a militia run by General Ahmed, works to unite the African American community in the Watts district of Los Angeles, California. At a militia-run clinic, Dr. Lisk informs Ahmed that there are not the proper supplies to help a friend of Ahmed’s who has overdosed on drugs. When Ahmed orders Lisk to send the patient to Martin Luther King Emergency Hospital, Ahmed’s partner, Colonel Kojah, opposes, insistent that their people should not rely on the outside world for help. Marsha, a nurse and Ahmed’s former girl friend, kisses Ahmed goodbye as she leaves. On the street, Marsha is harassed by Vito and Ernest, two white gangsters who work for a local crime syndicate. Marsha slaps Vito in self-defense, and he hits her back. Several members of the People’s Army come to her aid, and a brawl ensues. Later, Kojah informs Ahmed that Marsha and several of their soldiers were injured in the scuffle. Kojah proposes a security force, and Ahmed reluctantly offers Kojah six men but emphasizes that their mission will be to protect, never to attack. Vince, the leader of the white crime syndicate, sends Vito to collect money from a pimp named Willie. Although Willie is not at home, Vito finds a white prostitute and demands Willie’s whereabouts, slapping her and bashing her head against the wall until she reveals the nightclub frequented by Willie. At the club, Vito and Ernest wait for Willie, who never shows up. At the bar, Vito spots Marsha and attacks her outside, knocking out her date and shoving her into the back of his car. As Ernest looks on, Vito rapes Marsha. Kojah recruits a belligerent man named ... +


The People’s Army, a militia run by General Ahmed, works to unite the African American community in the Watts district of Los Angeles, California. At a militia-run clinic, Dr. Lisk informs Ahmed that there are not the proper supplies to help a friend of Ahmed’s who has overdosed on drugs. When Ahmed orders Lisk to send the patient to Martin Luther King Emergency Hospital, Ahmed’s partner, Colonel Kojah, opposes, insistent that their people should not rely on the outside world for help. Marsha, a nurse and Ahmed’s former girl friend, kisses Ahmed goodbye as she leaves. On the street, Marsha is harassed by Vito and Ernest, two white gangsters who work for a local crime syndicate. Marsha slaps Vito in self-defense, and he hits her back. Several members of the People’s Army come to her aid, and a brawl ensues. Later, Kojah informs Ahmed that Marsha and several of their soldiers were injured in the scuffle. Kojah proposes a security force, and Ahmed reluctantly offers Kojah six men but emphasizes that their mission will be to protect, never to attack. Vince, the leader of the white crime syndicate, sends Vito to collect money from a pimp named Willie. Although Willie is not at home, Vito finds a white prostitute and demands Willie’s whereabouts, slapping her and bashing her head against the wall until she reveals the nightclub frequented by Willie. At the club, Vito and Ernest wait for Willie, who never shows up. At the bar, Vito spots Marsha and attacks her outside, knocking out her date and shoving her into the back of his car. As Ernest looks on, Vito rapes Marsha. Kojah recruits a belligerent man named Delmay to join his security team. As Kojah patrols a neighborhood with his new security force, he finds Marsha at home with bruises on her face. She reveals that Vito hurt her, and Kojah breaks into Vito’s home and castrates the gangster. Vito’s boss, Vince, learns what happened in the middle of the night and instructs his men to retaliate. The next day, as the white gangsters collect payment from an African American storeowner, Kojah’s security force emerges from the back room and attacks them. Phil, another of Vince’s henchmen, is thrown out the window by one of Kojah’s soldiers when he tries to collect money from Willie’s white prostitute. Determined to collect the syndicate’s money, Ernest goes to a barbershop but is held up by Kojah’s force. However, Ernest’s cohorts, disguised as barbershop clients, shoot Kojah’s soldiers and recover their cash. On the way out, Ernest tells a barber to spread the word that he will seek vengeance if any more harm comes to his men. Soon after, Ernest is seduced by two women on the road; however, when he tries to flirt with them, they drive into his car, causing him to veer off a cliff. Kojah and his men approach the upturned vehicle and set it on fire as Ernest begs for his life. Vince orders his men to lay low until he decides their next move. With the money he has stolen from Vince’s rackets, Kojah buys a large house on a three-acre lot where he establishes a compound. He promotes Delmay to major, and the two set up a training center on the premises. Sometime later, Kojah lounges by his pool as soldiers report the money they have collected from various drug dealers, pimps, and small businesses formerly run by Vince. Kojah and his soldiers change their “white man” names to Swahili names, and the force adopts a new, all-black uniform. At the hospital, Ahmed convinces Marsha to spend the night with him, and they make love; however, she sends him away after she receives a phone call from Lisk, who says that the clinic was bombed because Ahmed’s men are running drug and prostitution rings. Ahmed claims to know nothing about the accusations, but Marsha believes his ignorance is reprehensible. Later, Ahmed tells television reporters that he plans to oust corrupt members from the People’s Army and acknowledges that his group’s government funding has been temporarily suspended. Ahmed goes to Kojah’s compound and demands to know about the drug and prostitution operations, but Kojah only says that they are at war and threatens to harm Ahmed if he stands in the way of the new militia. After Ahmed’s men steal drug money from two of Kojah’s soldiers, Ahmed is kidnapped and taken to a secluded area, where Kojah’s soldiers shoot him and leave him for dead. Ahmed crawls to safety, and, later, Marsha tends to his wounds. Kojah becomes increasingly greedy, bankrupting the criminals and business owners he now controls. Armed with a bag of weapons, Ahmed sneaks onto Kojah’s compound and rigs several explosives with tripwires. When a troop marches past the first tripwire, several men are killed. Ahmed sets off a second explosive, then guns down Kojah’s high-ranking officers as they rush outside. Ahmed corners Kojah by his pool and Kojah drops his gun into the water. Delmay attacks Ahmed from behind, but Kojah accidentally slits Delmay’s throat when he attempts to stab Ahmed. Kojah and Ahmed engage in a fistfight. Falling into the pool, Ahmed grabs Kojah’s gun, shoots him, and leaves the compound victorious. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.