- William Smith
- Tony Burton
- Frank Christi
- Damu King
That's the name of the goddamn game!
A late-period entry in the blaxploitation cycle, John Evans's BLACKJACK is kind of akin to a black-skinned OCEAN'S ELEVEN, if OCEAN'S had less Rat-Pack-style farting around and more racial tension. Frank Christi stars as Joe Greene, a dude who's gone up the river for five years for a crime he didn't commit. (Of course.) While in prison, he befriends four fellow convicts and trains them all in the game of blackjack, so that they can get jobs in casinos when they get out. The ultimate plan? Hit five casino/hotels in one night, make some scratch and get even with Andy Mayfield (William Smith), the smirking white dude who got Greene fingered.
It's not the top of the heap for this genre, but BLACKJACK is solid stuff, and it keeps moving - a satisfying bit of entertainment. It does what it came to do with no muss and no fuss, all set to a killer soundtrack. It's a heist flick. It's an action flick. It's a love story. It's a tale of empowerment and revenge. It's.... BLACKJACK! Dig it.