This article needs additional citations for verification . (May 2018) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
|Three the Hard Way|
|Directed by||Gordon Parks Jr.|
|Written by|| Eric Bercovici |
Jerrold L. Ludwig
|Starring|| Fred Williamson |
|Music by||The Impressions|
|Distributed by||Allied Artists Pictures Corporation|
|June 26, 1974|
|89 minutes (DVD); 105 minutes (TV version); 93 minutes (theatrical release)|
Three the Hard Way is a 1974 action blaxploitation film directed by Gordon Parks Jr., written by Eric Bercovici and Jerrold L. Ludwig, and starring Fred Williamson, Jim Brown, and Jim Kelly.
Jimmy Lait (Brown) and his girlfriend, Wendy, come across Jimmy's friend, House, wounded and dying. Lait learns from House that he had escaped from a secret medical experimentation facility. Later in the hospital, a delirious House tells Lait that there is someone who aims to "kill us all" and that they have a way of doing it. However, Lait has to return to the studio to supervise a recording session with a group he is producing, The Impressions. He leaves Wendy in the hospital.
While Wendy talks to Jimmy on the phone outside of the room, two men climb through the window, murder House and kidnap Wendy. After finding out about her kidnapping, Jimmy begins a quest to find the whereabouts of his girlfriend, but a group of attackers ambush him. Lait survives with the help of his friend, Jagger Daniels (Williamson). Lait and Daniels join up with Mister Keyes (Kelly, named "Mister" by his mother so people would be forced to show him respect) after he wins a fist fight with several police officers attempting to plant drugs in his car.
Lait is shot as they capture a member of Feather's gang, but are unable to force him to give up his secrets. Jagger calls three dominatrixes: The Countess (Pamela Serpe), The Empress (Irene Tsu), and The Princess (Marie O'Henry). The eager women ask Jagger if they can go all the way, meaning, torturing the captured man to death. Jagger tells them, only after the prisoner gives him the information he seeks. They agree and proceed to go upstairs to torture the tied up man. The three women at first excite the captive by baring their breasts, but they torture him while Keyes and Daniels wait. After some time the women emerge, and say the captive is ready to talk. He informs them of Feather's plot and dies from his torture.
There is a secret plot of black genocide concocted by the nefarious Monroe Feather (Jay Robinson), the leader of a secret Neo-Nazi, white supremacist organization. Their chief scientist, Dr. Fortrero (Richard Angarola), has developed a lethal poison that only affects African Americans. They plan to deploy the serum into the water systems of Washington, D.C., Detroit, and Los Angeles, in order to wipe out their black populations.
The three heroes re-unite as Lait is leaving the hospital, and decide to stop the poisoning of the water supplies. "Three the hard way, three cities, the three of us."
Lait returns to Chicago. Mister Keyes stops the poisoning in Washington, D.C., as Jagger does in Detroit. They reunite again to stop Feather and arm themselves to the teeth. They raid Feather's compound and rescue Wendy after a huge shootout, leaving Dr. Fortrero burned alive, and Feather and many white supremacists dead.
The plot of Three The Hard Way has been copied and parodied, most notably in the films I'm Gonna Git You Sucka and Undercover Brother . I'm Gonna Git You Sucka, which also stars Jim Brown, includes a gag where Brown never reloads his gun, same as the characters he and Williamson play in Three the Hard Way. In Undercover Brother, protagonist Eddie Griffin portrays "Undercover Brother", a soulful crime-fighting vigilante who must stop the white-run "Man" before he destroys the black population of the United States through an ingested toxin. Also, the Man's second in command is named Mr. Feathers, played by Chris Kattan, who is named after Monroe Feather from Three The Hard Way.
Performed by Curtis Mayfield's former group The Impressions, the soundtrack featured the songs "That's What Love Can Do" and "Three the Hard Way" plus "Make a Resolution".
Curtis Lee Mayfield was an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and record producer, and one of the most influential musicians behind soul and politically conscious African-American music. He first achieved success and recognition with The Impressions during the civil rights movement of the late 1950s and 1960s, and later worked as a solo artist.
James Nathaniel Brown is an American former professional football player, sports analyst and actor. He was a fullback for the Cleveland Browns of the National Football League (NFL) from 1957 through 1965. Considered to be one of the greatest football players of all time, Brown was a Pro Bowl invitee every season he was in the league, was recognized as the AP NFL Most Valuable Player three times, and won an NFL championship with the Browns in 1964. He led the league in rushing yards in eight out of his nine seasons, and by the time he retired, he had shattered most major rushing records. In 2002, he was named by The Sporting News as the greatest professional football player ever.
Mister Miracle is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. He first appeared in Mister Miracle #1 and was created by Jack Kirby.
Frederick Robert Williamson, also known as The Hammer, is an American actor and former professional American football defensive back who played mainly in the American Football League during the 1960s. Williamson is perhaps best known for his film career, starring as Tommy Gibbs in the 1973 crime drama film Black Caesar and its sequel Hell Up in Harlem. Williamson also had other notable roles in other 1970s blaxploitation films such as Hammer (1972), That Man Bolt (1973) and Three the Hard Way (1974).
Undercover Brother is a 2002 American action comedy blaxploitation film directed by Malcolm D. Lee and starring Eddie Griffin. The screenplay is by Michael McCullers and co-executive producer John Ridley, who created the original Internet animation characters. It spoofs blaxploitation films of the 1970s as well as a number of other films, most notably the James Bond franchise. It also stars former Saturday Night Live cast member Chris Kattan and comedian Dave Chappelle as well as Aunjanue Ellis, Neil Patrick Harris, Denise Richards, and Billy Dee Williams, and features a cameo by James Brown.
Dennis Dexter Haysbert is an American actor and voice actor. In the U.S. he is known for his lead roles in many screen films and television shows. More recently he has served as a spokesman for Allstate Insurance. He portrayed baseball player Pedro Cerrano in the Major League film trilogy, Secret Service Agent Tim Collin in the 1997 political thriller film Absolute Power, and Sergeant Major Jonas Blane on the drama series The Unit. He is also known for playing U.S. Senator David Palmer on the first 5 seasons of 24 and has appeared in the films Love Field, Heat, Waiting to Exhale, Far from Heaven, and the science fiction series Incorporated.
James Milton Kelly was an American athlete, actor, and martial artist. Kelly rose to fame in the early 1970s appearing in several blaxploitation films. Kelly played opposite Bruce Lee in the 1973 martial arts action film Enter the Dragon. He also had lead roles in 1974's Black Belt Jones as the title character and Three the Hard Way as Mister Keyes. Kelly died of cancer on June 29, 2013 at age 67.
Foxy Brown is a 1974 American blaxploitation film written and directed by Jack Hill. It stars Pam Grier as the title character, described by one character as "a whole lot of woman", who showcases unrelenting sexiness while battling the film's villains. The film was released by American International Pictures as a double feature with Truck Turner. The film uses Afrocentric references in clothing and hair. Grier starred in six blaxploitation films for American International Pictures.
Undercover is the 17th British and 19th American studio album by The Rolling Stones, released in 1983.
Jay Robinson was an American actor specializing in character roles. He achieved his greatest fame playing Emperor Caligula in the film The Robe (1953) and its sequel Demetrius and the Gladiators (1954), and years later portraying the boss of the character played by Warren Beatty in Shampoo (1975).
Blaxploitation or blacksploitation is an ethnic subgenre of the exploitation film that emerged in the United States during the early 1970s. The films, while popular, suffered backlash for disproportionate numbers of stereotypical film characters showing bad or questionable motives, including most roles as criminals resisting arrest. However, the genre does rank among the first in which black characters and communities are the heroes and subjects of film and television, rather than sidekicks, villains, or victims of brutality. The genre's inception coincides with the rethinking of race relations in the 1970s.
Black Dynamite is a 2009 American blaxploitation action comedy film starring Michael Jai White, Tommy Davidson, and Salli Richardson. The film was directed by Scott Sanders and co-written by White, Sanders, and Byron Minns, who also co-stars.
Devil Face, Angel Heart is a 2002 thriller film directed by Billy Chung.
No Way Back is a 1976 blaxploitation film written and directed by Fred Williamson, who also stars as Jesse Crowder, a private detective who once used to belong to a police force but that now finds himself taking odd jobs for a little extra money. Catchphrases include “ Never trust a woman with her clothes off!” and “You pay the bill. I’ll deliver it, legal, illegal, moral or otherwise!”
Undercover Maisie is a 1947 American comedy film directed by Harry Beaumont and starring Ann Sothern, Barry Nelson, and Mark Daniels. It was produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, the final film of the ten film Maisie series starring Ann Sothern as ex-showgirl Maisie Ravier. In this series entry, Maisie Ravier decides to join the Los Angeles police force. The previous film was Up Goes Maisie.
The Mind Poisoners is the eighteenth novel in the long-running Nick Carter-Killmaster series of spy novels. Carter is a US secret agent, code-named N-3, with the rank of Killmaster. He works for AXE – a secret arm of the US intelligence services.
The Heart of a Woman is an album by American pop singer Johnny Mathis that was released on November 25, 1974 by Columbia Records. Produced by ex-Motowner Johnny Bristol, the LP is made up mostly of new material, in that only three of the 10 songs had already been recorded by other artists.
One Down, Two to Go is a 1982 American blaxploitation film written and directed by Fred Williamson and starring Williamson, Jim Brown, Richard Roundtree and Jim Kelly. This is the third film to star Williamson, Brown, and Kelly, following Three the Hard Way and Take a Hard Ride. Williamson, Brown, and Roundtree would reunite nearly fifteen years later in Original Gangstas.