Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Also known as Harlem Big Shot, this all-black production is astonishingly racist even by 1932 standards. Lampooning Marcus Garvey's "Back to Africa" movement, the film stars A. B. Comatherie as Deacon Charcoal Johnson, a bombastic phony who exhorts his fellow black citizens to declare themselves free of their white oppressors and establish their own country (the United States of Africa!) To achieve this lofty goal, he establishes a fund-raising organization, collecting money from Harlem to Mississippi -- all the while intending to keep every penny for himself. Johnny Lee, best remembered as Algonquin J. Calhoun the lawyer on TV's Amos 'N' Andy, delivers a scene-stealing performance as the Count of Zanzibar. Lest anyone make the mistake of taking The Black King seriously, the producers include a scene in which the resplendently caparisoned Deacon Johnson and his black army parade down the street to the tune of Victor Herbert's "March of the Wooden Soldiers".
religion, bishop, campaign, con/scam, cross-cultural-relations, embezzlement, girlfriend, movement [action], revenge
Low Production Values