Shaft

Shaft

2019, R, 111 min. Directed by Tim Story. Starring Samuel L. Jackson, Jessie T. Usher, Regina Hall, Richard Roundtree, Alexandra Shipp, Matt Lauria, Luna Lauren Vélez, Method Man.

REVIEWED By Steve Davis, Fri., June 14, 2019

It began in 1971 as a gritty blaxploitation movie about a macho private eye who fancied leather coats and foxy ladies, a righteous cat glowering with absurd virility as he whooped ass bare-knuckled in a lawless Harlem. Back then, John Shaft (Roundtree) was a love-‘em-and-leave-‘em sex machine who’d risk his neck for his brother man, according to the Oscar-winning theme song by Isaac Hayes. After two deplorable quick-buck sequels in the early Seventies, the character was revived in 2000, this time in a serviceable remake under the same title that featured Shaft’s nephew, John Shaft II (Jackson), a brash NYPD detective who mostly glowered beneath his dark shades, a slicker millennium version of his legendary uncle. Now, almost two decades later – and nearly half a century since the original was released – this eponymously titled sequel (where’s a Roman numeral when you need one?) introduces the Second’s estranged young son, John “J.J.” Shaft Jr. (Usher), a buttoned-down FBI data analyst who never glowers, unlike the father and grandfather sharing his same name. (For unexplained reasons, the family tree is modified in this movie.) To the familiar instrumentals of Hayes’ classic Grammy-winning score, these three generations of men come together in this latest incarnation of Shaft to crack jokes and kick butt in a movie seemingly programmed by algorithms calculated to produce mindless entertainment. Can ya dig it?

Not surprisingly, this is Jackson’s show from the beginning. He takes imperious pleasure in using the MF adjective to describe anyone and anything (which is a lot), in pronouncing the P-word with the emphasis on the first syllable (which is even more). John Shaft II is politically incorrect without shame, a character trait the movie uncomfortably uses for comic effect to create a constant source of friction between him and his more upright offspring. So what’s a little homophobic, sexist, and racist humor among friends? It’s not so much offensive as it is cheap. But things get weird when the former Mrs. Shaft and J.J.’s mother (Hall) becomes aroused as she watches her ex-husband, a man she otherwise loathes, pick off the bad guys one by one in a bloody restaurant shootout right out of Scarface. They get even weirder when Junior’s wannabe love interest (Shipp) gets similarly turned on as she watches him unexpectedly display similar sharpshooting skills in yet another bistro gunfight littered with corpses. Times sure have changed since the old Shaft made women swoon by simply treating them like shit. As for the new Shaft, is he still a bad mutha? Shut your mouth.

Showtimes

Tue., June 18

3:25, 6:55, 9:55
AFA 12:10

Wed., June 19

12:10, 3:25, 6:55, 9:55

Alamo Drafthouse Slaughter Lane

5701 W. Slaughter, 512/861-7060, drafthouse.com/austin/theater/slaughter-lane

Showtimes at this venue are subject to frequent change. Please confirm daily times by phone or website.

Tue., June 18

4:25, 7:25, 10:20
AFA 10:25am, 1:30

Wed., June 19

1:30, 4:25, 7:25, 10:20

Barton Creek Square (AMC)

2901 South Capital of Texas Hwy, 512/306-1991, www.amctheatres.com

Matinee discounts available before 4pm daily. Bring Your Baby matinees the first Tuesday of every month.

Tue., June 18

CC/DVS 11:20am, 2:00, 4:40, 7:20, 10:20

Wed., June 19

CC/DVS 11:20am, 2:00, 4:40, 7:20, 10:20

Cinemark 20 and XD

N. I-35 & FM 1825, 512/989-8535

Cost for 3-D and XD shows is regular ticket price plus a premium.

Tue., June 18

digital 11:20am, 2:10, 5:00, 7:50, 10:40, 10:55

Wed., June 19

digital 11:20am, 2:10, 5:00, 7:50, 10:40, 10:55

Cinemark Cedar Park

1335 E. Whitestone, Cedar Park, 800/326-3264

Call theatre for complete list of movies and showtimes.

Tue., June 18

digital 11:05am, 1:50, 4:35, 7:20, 10:20

Wed., June 19

digital 11:05am, 1:50, 4:35, 7:20, 10:20

Tue., June 18

digital 10:45am, 1:35, 4:25, 7:15, 10:05

Wed., June 19

digital 10:45am, 1:35, 4:25, 7:15, 10:05

Cinemark Round Rock

4401 N. I-35, Round Rock, 800/326-3264

Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium. Call theatre for complete March 26-28 showtimes.

Tue., June 18

digital 11:20am, 2:10, 5:05, 8:05, 11:00

Wed., June 19

digital 11:20am, 2:10, 5:05, 8:05, 11:00

Cinemark Southpark Meadows

9900 S. I-35, 800/326-3264

Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Tue., June 18

digital 9:45am, 12:45, 3:45, 6:45, 9:45

Wed., June 19

digital 9:45am, 12:45, 3:45, 6:45, 9:45

Cinemark Stone Hill Town Center

18820 Hilltop Commercial Dr., 512/251-0938, www.cinemark.com

Tue., June 18

digital 10:00am, 12:55, 3:50, 6:45, 9:45

Wed., June 19

digital 10:00am, 12:55, 3:50, 6:45, 9:45

City Lights Theatre

420 Wolf Ranch Parkway, Georgetown, 512/868-9922

Tue., June 18

10:40am, 1:40, 4:40, 7:40, 10:25

Wed., June 19

10:40am, 1:40, 4:40, 7:40, 10:25

EVO Entertainment

3200 Kyle Crossing, Kyle, 512/523-9009, www.evo-entertainment.com

Tue., June 18

11:30am, 2:15, 5:00, 7:45, 10:30

Wed., June 19

11:30am, 2:15, 5:00, 7:45, 10:30

Flix Brewhouse

2200 S. I-35, Round Rock, 512/244-3549, www.flixbrewhouse.com/round-rock

Tue., June 18

CC 10:00am, 1:30, 3:00, 8:00

Wed., June 19

CC 1:40, 4:40, 7:45, 9:45

Thu., June 20

CC 1:00, 4:15, 8:15, 10:10

Galaxy Highland 10

6700 Middle Fiskville, 512/467-7305, www.galaxytheatres.com

No one under 18 will be allowed in the theatre on Friday or Saturday after 7pm without an adult.

Tue., June 18

CC 10:10am, 10:30am, 1:10, 1:30, 4:10, 4:30, 7:10, 7:30, 10:30

Wed., June 19

CC 10:10am, 10:30am, 1:10, 1:30, 4:10, 4:30, 7:10, 7:30, 10:30

Thu., June 20

CC 10:10am, 10:30am, 1:10, 1:30, 4:10, 4:30, 7:10, 7:30, 10:30

Gateway Theatre

9700 Stonelake, 512/416-5700

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Tue., June 18

CC/DVS 12:50, 4:00, 7:10, 10:10

Wed., June 19

CC/DVS 12:50, 4:00, 7:10, 10:10

Thu., June 20

CC/DVS 12:50, 4:00, 7:10, 10:10

Hometown Cinemas

120 MLK Jr. Industrial Blvd. W, Lockhart, 512/398-4100, www.hometowncinemas.com

Tue., June 18

11:35am, 2:05, 4:30, 7:30, 10:00

Wed., June 19

11:35am, 2:05, 4:30, 7:30, 10:00

Thu., June 20

11:35am, 2:05, 4:30, 7:30, 10:00

iPic Theaters Austin

3225 Amy Donovan Plaza, 512/568-3400, www.ipic.com

Tue., June 18

12:00, 3:15, 7:15, 10:30

Wed., June 19

12:00, 3:15, 7:15, 10:30

Thu., June 20

12:00, 3:15, 7:15, 10:30

AMC Lakeline 9

11200 Lakeline Mall Dr., Cedar Park, 512/335-4793

Discounts daily before 6pm.

Tue., June 18

CC/DVS 12:45, 3:30, 7:45

Wed., June 19

CC/DVS 12:45, 3:30, 7:45

Metropolitan

901 Little Texas, 512/447-0101

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Tue., June 18

CC/DVS 11:30am, 2:15, 5:10, 8:00, 10:45

Wed., June 19

CC/DVS 11:30am, 2:15, 5:10, 8:00, 10:45

Thu., June 20

CC/DVS 11:30am, 2:15, 5:10, 8:00, 10:45

Moviehouse & Eatery

8300 N. FM 620, Bldg. B, 512/501-3520, www.themoviehouse.com/trails/

Tue., June 18

1:00, 4:00, 7:00, 10:00

Wed., June 19

10:00am, 1:00, 4:00, 7:00, 10:00

Thu., June 20

10:00am, 1:00, 4:00, 7:00, 10:00

Moviehouse & Eatery - Lantana Place

7415 Southwest Parkway, Building 7, 512/572-0770, www.themoviehouse.com/lantana/

Tue., June 18

10:40am, 1:45, 4:55, 8:00, 11:05

Wed., June 19

10:40am, 1:45, 4:55, 8:00, 11:05

Thu., June 20

10:40am, 1:45, 4:55, 8:00, 11:05

Schulman Theatres Lost Pines 8

1600 Chestnut St, Bastrop, 512/321-0123, www.schulmantheatres.com

Tue., June 18

10:05am, 12:50, 3:55, 6:50, 9:50

Wed., June 19

9:50am, 12:50, 3:55, 6:50, 9:50

ShowBiz Cinemas 8 Marble Falls

2600 Hwy 281 North, Marble Falls

Call theatre for August 22-23 showtimes.

Tue., June 18

11:00am, 2:10, 4:30, 7:50, 10:00

Wed., June 19

11:00am, 2:10, 4:30, 7:50, 10:00

Thu., June 20

11:00am, 2:10, 4:30, 7:50, 10:00

Sky Cinemas

13201 US-290, 512/457-0700, www.skycinemas.com

Tue., June 18

11:00am, 1:25, 4:20, 7:00, 9:35

Wed., June 19

11:00am, 1:25, 4:20, 7:00, 9:35

Tue., June 18

12:15, 1:20, 5:00, 8:00, 11:00

Wed., June 19

12:15, 1:20, 5:00, 8:00, 11:00

Starplex 12 San Marcos

1250 Wonder World Drive, San Marcos, 512/805-8000

Tue., June 18

11:30am, 2:15, 5:00, 7:45, 10:30

Wed., June 19

11:30am, 2:15, 5:00, 7:45, 10:30

Thu., June 20

11:30am, 2:15, 5:00

Westgate 11

4477 S. Lamar, 512/899-2717

Discounts daily before 6pm. Cost for 3-D shows is regular ticket price plus a $3.50 premium.

Tue., June 18

CC/DVS 11:00am, 2:10, 4:45, 7:25, 10:00

Wed., June 19

CC/DVS 11:00am, 2:10, 4:45, 7:25, 10:00

Thu., June 20

CC/DVS 11:30am, 2:15, 5:00, 7:00, 9:35

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS FILM

Shaft, Tim Story, Samuel L. Jackson, Jessie T. Usher, Regina Hall, Richard Roundtree, Alexandra Shipp, Matt Lauria, Luna Lauren Vélez, Method Man

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