Hey everyone, Traci here!
Today’s submission for WTF – Why the Foolishness? was inspired by our recent mention of the Tyler Perry movie, For Colored Girls in episode 5. Coincidentally, I wrote a review about this on my personal blog a while back so I thought it was appropriate to repost the review here on The Side Eye. I think it fits in with the foolishness theme better on here, haha. If you’ve seen the movie, read the review and let us know what your take is!
Reposted from Traci’s blog:
For Colored Girls: Sad ass women, fine ass men (except for the old guy)
Not pictured: Low-down, dirty, fine brothas
So, I saw this a couple of weeks ago with a few women from a Bible study group so immediately I had a different expectation of what this movie was going to be about. An uplifting, empowering movie geared towards black women, right? Wrong…so wrong. I found out pretty quickly that this wasn’t appropriate for a Bible study group at all, and that I was the only one who wanted to laugh at parts that probably weren’t supposed to be funny (but that’s another story). After a while all the drama and tragedy became so much that it was hard to take it seriously anymore, there weren’t many breaks from it. It made me much more aware of the fact that it was a movie. This was a movie that was adapted from what I assume to be a very powerful play. Although I never read the play, and I’m not really a Tyler Perry fan, it was obvious that he wanted to preserve some of the dialogue and impact…most notably during the times when any of the women used the word “colored”. I wasn’t offended at the usage at all, it just felt unnatural…anachronistic maybe? The movie definitely took place in present day America. I don’t know, I mean, when was the last time you heard someone say “colored”? (The NAACP doesn’t count) I’ve never even heard my grandparents say that. Or is the term making a comeback and I just didn’t know? I guess I was just bothered by it because it felt soooo out of place, and it’s soooo easy to make that change in the script. Right?
Well, anyway here are just a few points that stood out to me about the film:
1) It’s a bit abstract. – Poetry from the original piece is interwoven with the dialogue. In some places it worked really well, but in most parts it was pretty confusing (to me anyway). I applaud that Perry tried to take some risks with this movie though. I see he tried to do something a bit more creative with his direction of the film, so that was cool in itself. I doubt that means we’ve seen the last of Medea or stuff like that, but at least he tried.
2) Black men get a baaaaaad rap in this one. I can’t think of one guy that redeemed it for ya’ll. Remember Lenny Kravitz in Precious, as that sexy beam of kindness in his role as the hospital nurse? Yeah…that guy is not in this movie. If he is in there, I easily forgot him because of all the devastation surrounding the main characters. So Fellas, don’t take your insecure, impressionable girlfriend or side-piece to see this if you are suspect…in ANYthing that you do.
2b) On the upside though, just about all of the men were fine. Plenty of eye candy in this one…except for the old guy I mentioned in the title of this post.
3) The acting was much better than I thought it would be…and I guess that’s saying a lot for a Tyler Perry movie. However, prepare for LOTS of close ups and crying.
4) Loretta Divine in a rare role where she’s not playing, as my friend calls it, “Somebody’s Mama.”
5) This movie is sad. Extremely sad. There was so much sadness going on that I couldn’t even get emotional. That statement doesn’t even make sense, and I know that. That’s how ridiculous it was. The movie kind of sets you up to expect things to be bad. I don’t remember much levity in the film at all. It was so sad that I had to TRY to find funny things…hence me being the only one snickering at inappropriate parts. I watch movies to be entertained and escape my own hum-drum events in life; I don’t want to watch movies so I can be depressed. I was too overwhelmed by the sad visuals, sad dialogue, and sad events to become emotionally attached. That much drama turns me off in real life, I’m surprised I made it through a whole movie of it. Again, I was expecting an overall uplifting message…so I guess that’s the only reason my reaction was like that. My expectations were just different. If there was an overall uplifting message I completely missed it.
My bet is that this movie will be destined to play over and over again on BET, Lifetime and WeTV (as in “we” hate men). If you see it, you’ll know what I mean. Not worth a movie ticket, but maybe a netflix night from someone else’s queue. For Colored Girls is not a terrible movie, but it also wasn’t worth the hype that surrounded it. I’d give it a solid C. Tell me what you think.