Coffy (1973) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Jack Hill
Starring: Pam Grier, Sid Haig, Booker Bradshaw
Rated: R/Region A/1:85/1080p/Number of Discs 1
Available from Olive Films
Pam Grier (Foxy Brown, Jackie Brown) stars as Nurse “Coffy” Coffin in the mother of all Blaxploitation films, Coffy. Coffy is a one-woman vigilante force, out to even the score with those that have hooked her sister on drugs. Using her feminine wiles (along with deadly weaponry), Coffy sets about ridding the streets of low-life drug dealers, pimps, deviants and society’s scum in the kick-ass action film Coffy. Jack Hill (Foxy Brown, Switchblade Sisters) directs Booker Bradshaw (The Strawberry Statement, Skullduggery), Robert DoQui (Nashville, Short Cuts) and Sid Haig (The Devil’s Rejects, Jackie Brown) in Coffy starring Pam Grier (Foxy Brown, Jackie Brown).
I recently went back revisited Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown, a movie that got a lot of influence from both Foxy Brown and this movie here, Coffy, both directed by Jack Hill. After seeing Foxy Brown and Coffy, you can see why Pam Grier was picked for the part. There is a comparison you can’t avoid between Foxy Brown and Coffy, this one seems more like the Death Wish of the blaxploitation genre, with Pam Grier’s character seeming to have a little more fire behind it. Only this time she isn’t mad because someone killed her man, she is all tore up because someone got her sister on drugs and that leads to worse coming to worse! Now, back in 1973 that was more than enough reason for someone to go underground and go against the dirty mofos that one might find there. As it is noted above, Coffy will use her womanly ways to help her do what she needs to do and for anyone watching, a 1973 Pam Grier doing as such is anything but a bad thing on-screen. Along for the ride as well is such other genre favorites as Sid Haig with a cool role. You almost look just as forward to seeing him in something like this as you are anyone else because he always brings the good regardless of the role!
One of the things to really like about a movie like Coffy is that it comes out guns blazing. There is no slack being shown, as we get a great scene with Coffy doing what she does best right from the start. You know you are in the 70s with a movie like this and it is like a time capsule for the time in a lot of ways and I mean that in the best way possible. The basic revenge plot works best in this setting. Basically, we have a story were a woman uses what she has to lure folks in to doom where the payoff is a shotgun. That is basically all you’d have to tell most folks to get them to watch a movie. It helps when the movie actually has a payoff and actually is very good and exceeds just what it uses to bring the audience in. There is action, there is comedy, and there is also a whole lot of 70s era Pam Grier. If it wasn’t for her performances in stuff like this, we never would have had her in Jackie Brown down the road. You really should see what got us to that point and you just can’t do that without seeing a movie like Coffy.
Quality of Transfer: 90%