Do You Care About The Oscars?

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Best Supporting Actress was the first award given out last night. I leaned toward the television set, my fingers crossed. Viola! Taraji! Come on!

(And I wasn’t rooting for either just because they were Black. I actually saw both films. And they were both great. And besides that, I saw Viola Davis in Antwone Fisher. THRILLING! And I’ve loved Taraji since Baby Boy: “I hate you Jody!”)

They both lost to Penelope Cruz.

Oh well.

I fell asleep thirty minutes later. So don’t look for an Oscar recap here.

(Though TH did wake me up once. And I saw Beyonce in a sparkly bodysuit singing snatches of musical numbers with Wolverine. What in the…?)

Anyway, I would have loved to see Viola or Taraji win. Just on general principle.

But both of their roles made me feel a little squirmy.

Viola’s role in Doubt was brief but powerful. She’s a brilliant actress. In her Big Scene, she was standing in front of Meryl Streep, steely and strong, tears streaming down her face.

And there was snot running down her nose right into her mouth. Like, into her mouth.

That snot bothered the hell out of me.

I think it was supposed to show us how resolute she was about her feelings: she couldn’t even bother to wipe her face. But I just didn’t like it. I feel like we’re always crying on the big screen. ALWAYS. If we are to be recognized by The Academy, we’d better be sobbing. This bothers me.

And as much as I love Taraji, some parts of her role as Brad Pitt’s mother in Benjamin Button made me cringe. She had the faux southern accent and the costuming to make her butt gargantuan. And she was the fawning mother of an abandoned white boy.

Viola and Taraji’s roles made me question how often Black Oscar-winners play roles that make me cringe.

There have been eleven Black actors who have won Academy Awards. Were all of the roles stereotypical? Where would they rate on my cringe-o-meter?

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Hattie McDaniel- Best Supporting Actress, Gone with the Wind

Her name was Mammy. A solid ten on the cringe-0-meter. Case closed.

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Sidney Poitier- Best Actor, Lilies of the Field

Ashamed to say I haven’t seen this film. But Sidney was always known for keeping it classy. I’m going out on a limb and giving this one a 1. Wait. I just read a summary of the film. He’s a handyman who builds a church for a group of German nuns for free. Hmmm. Maybe I’ll change that rating to a 3…

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Louis Gossett Jr.- Best Supporting Actor, An Officer and a Gentleman

Okay. I’m realizing now how bad my movie knowledge is. I’ve never seen this film either! Was Lou Gossett Jr’s role cringe worthy? I have no idea.

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Denzel Washington- Best Supporting Actor, Glory

Period films make me cringe automatically. (And any film, like this one, that includes a mute Black man gets an extra point on the cringe-o-meter). I do remember Denzel being a proud, defiant ex-slave in this film. But the Big Scene, in which Denzel lets drop a single tear while getting whipped…cringe-o-RAMA.

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Whoopi Goldberg- Best Supporting Actress, Ghost (1990)

I’m still pissed off about this. She won for Ghost?! I dare anyone to tell me that this made sense. She didn’t win for The Color Purple? She won for Ghost!? Don’t get me wrong, her role in the Color Purple was off the charts on the cringe-o-meter. But still. She was an acting fool in that movie! In Ghost? Not so much. She was simply the comic foil to the GWM, (Good White Man).

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Cuba Gooding Jr. Best Supporting Actor, Jerry Maguire

Loved Cuba in this film. LOVED Regina King as his wife. But it’s a five on the cringe-o-meter. He’s the loudmouth athlete with the catchphrase playing the comic foil to the GWM. I’m so conflicted by this stuff. I can’t hate on Cuba. (At least not in this film). But ugh, I’m SO tired of the Black man and the GWM as a film theme.

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Halle Berry- Best Actress, Monster’s Ball

No Halle. No. No. No. I can’t. I just can’t. I wanted to crawl UNDER the theater when she started moaning “make me feel goooood” to Billy Bob. It wasn’t dark and edgy. It was just wrong. BUT. I have to say, when she won, she said this. And it gave me chills:

“Oh my God. I’m sorry. This moment is so much bigger than me.

“This moment is for Dorothy Dandridge, Lena Horne, Diahann Carroll. It’s for the women that stand beside me – Jada Pinkett, Angela Bassett and it’s for every nameless, faceless woman of color that now has a chance because this door tonight has been opened.”

Great speech. But that’s all I loved about that movie. (Though I did like Mos Def…)

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Denzel Washington Training Day (2001)

Didn’t see this one. Can someone tell me if this was cringe-worthy? I remember people grumbling about how Denzel won for playing a bad guy. I don’t have a problem with that, necessarily. All I know is, he should have won for Malcolm X. Full stop. Wait. Let me see who else was nominated that year… Okay. I take that back. He lost to Al Pacino in Scent of A Woman. He was also up against Robert Downey Jr and Clint Eastwood. So maybe it was a tight race. Nope. I take all that back. Denzel should have won.

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Jamie Foxx- Best Actor, Ray (2004)

No cringing here. We all knew Jamie would kill this role and win this award before they even held the wrap party for this joint. Am I the only person who thinks it’s kind of funny that he won an Oscar for Best Actor in 2004 and now he’s singing Blame it On the Alcohol with T-Pain?

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Morgan Freeman- Best Supporting Actor, Million Dollar Baby

Didn’t see it. Need a rating for the cringe-0-meter from my dear readers. He was the trainer, yes? Helping out the GWW?  Morgan Freeman automatically garners at least a two on the meter just for existing. He’s the patron saint of cringe-inducing films. I love him to death. But if I see him on the movie poster, I know there’s a good chance I’ll be cringing at some point in the film. TH keeps telling me I need to see The Shawshank Redemption. I took one look at the movie poster and I said oh hell no. Never.


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Forest Whitaker- Best Actor, The Last King of Scotland

I didn’t see this film either! I am so whack. I’ve heard nothing but good things about his performance. But once again, if memory serves, his portrayal of Idi Amin is not a stand alone biography. The story is filtered through the eyes of a GWM. Am I right? That automatically takes it up a few notches on the meter.

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Jennifer Hudson- Best Supporting Actress, Dreamgirls

Sigh. I didn’t get this movie. I wanted to love it. I really did. And there was a scene in the very beginning, when Jennifer Hudson challenges a promoter, that showed me what she was capable of. But for the rest of the film, I was completely underwhelmed. When Jamie Foxx broke out into song in an alleyway, I was done. Of course, Jennifer killed The Song. But honestly, I didn’t see an Oscar-winning performance here. But there was no cringing. (Except at the poorly written script).

When I think of films that don’t make me cringe, they have something in common. They were written and/or directed by Black folks.

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This was a rich, nuanced love story. I sat up straight and couldn’t take my eyes off the screen.  I fantasized about Lorenz Tate for a few years after the credits rolled. Have watched this film a million times since. Still holds up.

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There were some weak plot points here. (Get out of here Tyra Banks!) And I felt like Omar Epps’ character was unforgivable. And I was always bothered that Sanaa took him back. (Girl, he’s only coming back to you because he’s injured!!). But I still loved this film. Alfre Woodard was stellar. And finding out later that Sanaa and Omar were actually a couple at the time they filmed, (and the director didn’t even know when they auditioned!), gives me chills to this day.

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I’m not sure if these films hold up today. I think Jada might make me cringe in a few scenes if I saw Menace again. But overall, these were honest portrayals of Black life that were wholly unfamiliar to me. And both times, I left the theater changed forever.

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School Daze, Mo Better Blues, Jungle Fever, Crooklyn.

If I ever divorce my husband, the paperwork will contain complaints like: “puts dirty clothes in pile next to bed instead of in hamper” and “has never cleaned the bathroom.” It will also say,”does not revere Spike Lee.”

I love how Spike Lee makes my people look on screen. At his best, I see myself. (Crooklyn!!) I’ve grown up with his work so I may be biased towards films like School Daze, which I saw on opening night at the Wellmont in Montclair. (There were mice in that joint. And the floor was so grimy that my feet were stuck to the floor. And I had my first real kiss with a boy who was way too old for me during the boring parts when the administration was talking about how to raise more money. Or something.)

I haven’t seen the film since. No idea how it holds up.

But in general, Spike Lee loves Black people. And it shows in his work. (Crooklyn!!)

I could go on and on.

The Five Heartbeats, Friday, Juice, (Tupac could have scored an Oscar nom. Seriously). Rosewood, Hollywood Shuffle.

I’m not going to say that we are always cringe-worthy when performing in films written or directed by others. There are many good, solid films about the Black experience, (Claudine, What’s Love Got To Do With It, Life, Coming To America),  that are not directed or written by Black folks.

But I am going to say that if we want to be recognized by The Academy, (do we? Does that even matter?), it seems as if we have to be willing to play a role written by others with us, (crying, fighting, f*cking, cursing, laughing or fetching), in mind.

Dear readers, what do you think? Does it matter if Black folks win Oscars or not? Do you think that Black roles are stereotypical when it comes to Oscar-winning stuff?

I’d love to hear from you…

P.S. An interesting quote from Viola Davis, in an interview with American Theater magazine back in 2004.

When I graduated from Julliard, I remember thinking that there was no difference between me and any other student in the school; I wanted to do what they were doing. I want to do what Meryl Streep is doing….[W]hen you see black movies, they’re always urban and funny, with pretty much the same actors, which is not a bad thing. The travesty is when you’re not that: I don’t speak Ebonics. I’m too old to be a homegirl. I’m not funny like that—sitcom,WB-UPN funny. So if I’m not that, then sometimes to the acting community you can be considered nothing, as opposed to being a wide range of things.

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24 Responses to “Do You Care About The Oscars?”

  1. Hanif Says:

    Why haven’t you seen training day?

    I often wonder why OUR “Classic” films never make the cut, we don’t even get a nod. Spike lee should have won best director for something? Malcolm X!

    Did you cringe at 3-6 mafia winning for it’s hard out here for a pimp?

    In the words of Jadakiss ” Why halle had to let a white man pop her to get a Oscar, Why Denzel had to be crooked before he took it.”

    All of the movies you mentioned that were written and directed by black folks are all of my all time favorite films, I try and diversify, but never get around to checking out the Oscar worthy films until they are nominated.

    And your right we, only get recognized for playing US. I thought the oscar was supposed to award people for portraying a character that’s far removed from themselves. A character that’s believable and takes a lot of acting skill. Laurence Fishbourne played Othello he killed it, he should have at least won something for that on GP because he was speaking shakepearean.

    I still can’t shake routing for the home team! I think we should win just for putting up a good enough performance to be nominated.

  2. Michael Says:

    I’m going to put it out there: I would love to be the first Black screenwriter to win an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. If I’m not the first, hell, who cares — I still would love the honor or at least the consideration.

    However, sometimes I worry that may never happen, or at the very least, not the way I would want it to. Unless you’re writing about Black characters in caricatures chances are you’ll be ignored. Meanwhile Hollywood can pat itself on the back for awarding “Slumdog Millionaire” over and over again. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good film, but India is “hot” at the moment and the story was written and directed by British men. How long ago did the country’s natural inhabitants give those chaps the boot? Exactly.

    Meanwhile Spike Lee has written so many intelligent and compelling stories about the Black experience and yet he’s only been nominated once. It’s not even like his films can only be appreciated by Black audiences. Kim Basinger proved that when she shouted out “Do The Right Thing” as the best film of the year that went without being nominated for Best Picture.

    I really hope “Precious” gets the Slumdog treatment next year, because at least it’s a story about Black people beyond the mammy, the sassy, the brutish, the foolish.

  3. TLAWrites Says:

    How ironic this was today’s post! I just hung up with my Aunt who asked me, “Who are we to judge what what a black filmaker deems is good work?” She just mentioned that TP had the #1 movie in the country and she was happ

    My frame of reference for “good” African American themed movies is very similar to yours Aliya. I miss the days of when I really had a chance to see my people in movies from a variety of perspectives that didn’t include too many bad “cring-worthy” moments. Any cringe-worthy moments that were included (O-Dawg took NO shorts in Menace) at least offered a some osrt of familiarity for any yong person growing up in urban America in the 90’s.

    I saw Training Day, Million Dollar Baby, and The Last King of Scotland. All performances were phenominal, but they all included hints of the GWM in one way or another. Morgan worked in the GWM’s gym (living in the back room) and Forest had a lot to prove to the GWM reporter in Last King. Denzel fell to the forces of evil for his dirty cop ways, but the GWM didn’t give him the beat down at the end. It was brown folks. lol

  4. la negrita Says:

    You forgot the ultimate shaft: Eve’s Bayou!!!!! This movie–directed by a BLACK WOMAN–was totally shut out. It makes me mad every time I think about it. But we can’t go showing well-to-do southern Blacks on the big screen. Nuh uh.

    What a brilliant movie all around. Artistically, it OWNS. I hatechu, Academy.

  5. Timothy Says:

    Hmm. In evaluating my opinion on this subject, I asked and answered a few questions of my own. 1. Do I feel like any Black actor/actress deserved an award this year and was slighted. NO. 2. Do I feel like any Black actor/actress should have been nominated and was not nominated this year. NO. 3. Do I feel like the majority of Black actors/actresses roles this year were buffonery and stereotypical. YES. 4. Do I feel like the majority of awards received and won by Black actors/actresses involved buffonery and sterotypical performances. YES.

    Conclusion: The Academy has a limited pool of Black Academy award quality performances to choose from. As a result, we may end up with great performances in no so admirable roles.

    It is upon ourselves of course to “do better” However, Black people tend to disagree on what “do better” means.

    Case in Point. Madea. Obviously TP movies are trash, but they sure do make a lot of money! Who do you blame?

  6. Michael Says:

    @ Timothy: Yeah, that isn’t fair at all. For every ONE Tyler Perry movie, there are a 100 different Judd Apatow like-comedies deemed ‘low brow.’ James Franco can play a pot head in one, and go on to play James Dean, Harvey Milk’s love interest, and who knows what else his agent can book him. How many Black actors that have done a TP film can say the same?

    Black actors – even those capable of more challenging roles – are usually not offered them. Case in point Taraji P. Henson, who everyone has been gushing about as of late yet recently came out and said despite her Academy Award nomination she can’t find work.

    I doubt Marissa Tomei and Amy Adams have that problem.

    Not to mention that despite however you feel about Tyler Perry, he finances his own films. Not many filmmakers – let alone Black ones – are in a position to do that. And the second any major studio does give a Black director the time of day, they immediately try to alter the story to fit their image of us.

    Hollywood puts people of color in a box, and indeed we have to ‘do better,’ but thankfully, thanks to people like Tyler Perry, we will have Black filmmakers that will ‘do better’ — although they’ll still likely be ignored by the Academy because we haven’t “done nothing to make them feel good.”

  7. Michael Says:

    And I can’t believe I’m defending Tyler Perry so much, but you know, he’s branching out and trying to give other Black filmmakers and writers a chance to have a voice. Can’t say the same for a lot of execs in La La land.

  8. Del Says:

    Eh. But if Viola or Taraji had won for their nominated performances, you would have added them to your cringe list of Oscar winners anyway. No?

    I saw both performances. I circled Viola Davis’ name when I voted for Best Female Actor in a Supporting Role for the SAG Awards. She was on screen for 12 minutes and took my breath away. It’s not easy to 1) play such a complex to role in such a short time, 2) steal scenes from Meryl Streep and 3) act your ass off while a big ‘ol stream of snot is flowing down your face. Dang that snot bothered me too!

    :::Inside Scoop:::

    The big snot scene was a reshoot. I went to a screening of Doubt, and afterwards, there was a Q & A with the writer John Patrick Shanley who of course wrote the play, which had a very successful run on Broadway and won a Pulitzer. (He also won an Oscar for writing Moonstruck, which Cher won her Oscar for.) He said that he shot the scene with Viola and Meryl and there was something about it he didn’t like. So, he lied to the producers and told them that there was a distracting lighting issue and he needed to reshoot the scene. Two weeks later, he had the two of them back on set for a do-over, and would you believe it? The snot upstaged them both!

    And yes, you need to listen to TH and watch The Shawshank Redemption. My favorite movie. Ever.

    Yeah, Halle’s sex scene was straight up porn. But Kate Winslet and Nicole Kidman are naked and gettin’ dug out in about every other film they star in, and no one cares. Why is that I wonder.

    The Oscars are kind of boring, but I still care and I still watch.

    And yes, please get your girl Beyonce. What was she doing and why was she there? Why? LOL.

    @negrita: Yes Eves Bayou was the ish! They got no love from the Academy. Shameful and all too common.

  9. Del Says:

    @Michael: You’ve definitely got a point there! Angela Bassett couldn’t get a job for almost two years after her Golden Globe WINNING and Oscar NOMINATED performance as Tina Turner. She talked about it in a Newsweek article many years ago. She thought it would be all gravy after the Oscar nod. Said she was shocked when folks were not taking her calls. Damn.

  10. Big Hass Says:

    Hey Aliya S. King,

    lol….I had to comment here because I figured you would check here 1st but anyway, THE MOVIE WAS TERRIBLE! Madea goes to jail OMG! I know I was fussy before but damn, it really was bad!

  11. Anita Says:

    You need to see Shawshank and quit playing

  12. Timothy Says:

    @Michael: Your not really defending TP in a discussion about artistic merit and academy-award winning performances are you?……really?…nahh!…seriously? noway! come come now. seriously. really! for real? noway! seriously? no for real now. serously. no kidding. no kidding? nahh. but seriously. for real? your joking, right? u dont say? really? no, really? scouts honor? nahhh, noway, come on. are you for real now or is this play play?

  13. Michael Says:

    @ Timothy. I don’t understand the point in trying to hammer Tyler Perry when not even Tyler Perry believes “Madea Goes To Jail” deserves an Academy Award.

    So what if his movies made a lot of money. So did Home Alone and Meet The Fockers. Did they win Academy Awards? Most movies loved by the masses don’t get kudos at the Oscars. The audiences those films are geared to tend not to care.

    My point is Tyler Perry makes those movies for a specific audience. And audience that I may not personally always agree with (I’d rather watch “Religulous”), but has been ignored for far too long and deserves to be catered to like everyone else.

    You’re asking people to ‘do better,’ yet historically when they do what does Hollywood offer them? Nothing.

    The blame doesn’t fall solely on us. That is ridiculous. How many Black executives are there in Hollywood with the power to green-lit films?

    Tyler Perry, nor any Black filmmaker for that matter should be the end all to be all when it comes to how we’re depicted on screen. It’s that type of elitist attitude that turns a lot of people off from other works of art they actually enjoy had it not been presented to them in such an arrogant way. You know, “Ugh, these movies are trash, here’s a REAL movie.”

    Yeah, way to change minds. I used to have that attitude about Tyler Perry, but I really don’t get it anymore. Thanks to him, “Precious,” a movie that would likely never be pushed by a major studio now has a chance to make history next year. And much of that has to do with Tyler having a separate production company for those filmmakers who want to “do better’ but can’t because lily-white Hollywood won’t let them.

  14. TLAWrites Says:

    Tyler Perry has found a lane and a core audience. He also generates millions of dollars for himself, Hollywoodna TBS! No doubt about and Madea Goes to Jail being the #1 and House of Payne receiving the TV it got is proof.

    However, separate the man and his art. Should be be commended for being a focused, smart business man? Indeed. Should he be awarded for keeping the scope and formula of his films so narrow? Not really. The standards that African American films and actors must live up to differ like everything else in this world.

    I don’t think white folks get mad at a Jude Apatow film because if they don’t like that representation they have many other choices. To choice to be able to see us on film across genre’s is limited.

    Spike Lee said it pefectly on the back of my 40 Acres and a Mule T-Shirt-Make Black Film By Any Means Necessary. Black millionaires forming a studio would be a POWER move.

  15. Timothy Says:

    @Michael. Your argument pretty much exemplifies the point that I was making; which was “Black people will differ as to what constitutes “doing better”.

    While some will see TP as a hero, game changer, door opener, one to be exemplified…others may see him and/or his work as buffonery, clownishness, stereotypical, preventing the advancement of our people.

    I am definitely not hammering TP (in any way!). TP is but one example of the silliness. I probably could name about 5 or 6 family reunion/cookout movies ive seen over the past few years, that fit the bill as well.

    For what its worth, my definitition of “doing better” does not exclude the people who go see and/or rent/buy these dvds (myself included). Until the consumers (us) start boycotting this crap, we can count on seeing another family reunion movie, starring our random favorite set of 15 black actors and actresses coming to a theatre real soon.

    Which therefore means, less opportunity for a minority artist to receive a academy award for a meaningful and prestigious role!

  16. Hanif Says:

    Eve’s Bayou!!! Classic, should have won something. Wow! what needs to be done, we have covered the black experience, where do we need to take it to have the academy drooling over our screenplay and the actors who protray in them.

    What about Higher Learning, I think that definitely stands up today.

    Somebody should have gotten something for Set it off. Queen Latifah!!! Jersey Stand Up!!!

    Cornbread Earl and Me, Cooley High, Claudine, Mahogony, Sparkle, THE WIZ!!!! Five Heart Beats!!! We are definitely overlooked…come on.

  17. Michael Says:

    I don’t think limiting any type of comedy or story will do any good as far as advancing another form of entertainment deemed more meaningful or prestigious. That frame of thinking is akin to the constant complaints about silly music. The idea that if you do away with the ‘coonery,’ things will magically get better. Nu uh.

    Black people are not a monolith. Neither our are forms of entertainment. I don’t really think the this vs. that argument will really advance either side. We need balance, which is why I think it’s important to have people like Tyler Perry and even Will Smith. Owning studios, or in Will’s case, production companies.

    That way you will get the Lee Daniels to have their films put out to a larger audience, or the Michael C. Martins who can stop working at MTA because someone gave their script a chance.

    I would never bother watching ‘Soul Plane,’ but I’m not mad the film is out there. I’m only bothered by that essentially being all that’s out there. However, I don’t think eliminating one will necessarily make room for the other. Everything ain’t for everybody. Balance. ‘Tis all I want.

  18. TLAWrites Says:

    @ Michael

    Amen. Balance in film is essential in order to attract ALL types of viewers.

  19. Aliya S. King Says:

    Damn. Michael and Timothy have me split straight down the middle. After seeing Madea on Friday, I’m really scratching my head over the idea of “balance.”

    Here’s the thing. I don’t see the redeeming qualities in the Madea movies. At least not the one I saw. I didn’t laugh out loud. It wasn’t an escape. It wasn’t just a mindless comedy.

    It just stank. Period.

    And it’s the number one movie this week.

    It stank. It’s number one. It stank. It’s number one. It stank. It’s number one.

    It makes my head want to explode.

    You could not get any further from an Academy Award winning film. (And how ironic is it that Viola Davis, an Academy Award nominee last night is in the film as well!)

    I think that speaks volumes about where we are right now. Viola isn’t turning down a Tyler Perry movie. And she won’t be. Even after starring with Meryl Streep.

    If she wants to eat, she’ll be in the next Madea movie.

    Black folks (just like white folks) are not a monolith. We’re a tapestry. We don’t have to share the exact same experience. Not in the way we raise our children. Not in the films we watch or the music we listen to.

    If I don’t like the Madea films or others of that ilk, I can work harder to see what’s out in theaters that may not have a large budget for advertising.

    There is a Black woman in my Secret Society who works in the film industry. I know she could tell me about some independent films that I would appreciate. And then it’s up to me not to be a lazy so-and-so and go into the City and see the screening that may not play every two hours at my local cineplex.

    It takes work to be discerning. And I know I could do a better job of supporting the efforts of the anti-Madea.

  20. Katura Says:

    I’m not a movie person–have seen no more than a handful of the ones mentioned in this post. (I’m worse than you Aliya!) But when it comes to awards, I think more often than not, they’re just validation by the mainstream. And that’s not so important to me. Of course, I’m not an actor, director or screenwriter….

    I know, a certain amount of marketing and pr is needed in order for most people to even know about new films, cds, tv shows, etc. But I think we need to continue telling our own stories and do a better job of supporting our own. (Like Aliya said, do our homework to find the movies, cds, books, that fall outside the spectrum of what big business wants to back with the big marketing bucks).

    I wonder if we’ll see the day when we have more Black movies, tv shows, etc. to choose from so that we don’t feel like we have to go see THE Black movie or turn to THE Black tv show just to see our people on the big or small screen.

    Can’t wait for “Precious.” I read Push and that’s a story that people need to see on the screen.

  21. Aliya S. King Says:

    @del: yes, I was cheering for them. even though both their roles were cringe-worthy. I’m complex.

  22. lucky Says:

    this is an interesting, complicated topic. some insightful points were made. just want to say (write) that halle berry’s speech made me cry. absolutely beautiful and we can complain all day about her depiction. jamie foxx’s speech and his performance were also brilliant. love that man. he has range…like you said, he can do the soloist with robert downey and then do blame it on the alcohol lol.

    it seems like about half of the black actors who won an Oscar had reasonable roles so I dunno… In general I feel like white moviegoers and moviemakers are just ignorant when it comes to the black experience on film. they don’t know what to do with us. there are so many lines not to cross so unfortunately there’s still barriers for black actors.

    also want to point out that Kelsey grammar (Frasier!!) is a producer (or creator or something like that) of two GREAT black shows in Girlfriends and The Game and that boggles my mind and I love it

    -clove

  23. Katura Says:

    But doesn’t producer just mean the person who puts up the money? It’s not like in music where the producer is responsible for the creative direction, right?

    Of course you need the money to get the shows on air, (and that is a huge financial risk) but the script writers, directors, actors etc. are the creative forces behind the shows–I think.

  24. LaShelle Says:

    I wanna know whyblack people haven’t come up with their own movie awards…we got em for music…i think its about time we begin to recognize our own excellence and stop seeking approval from white people…i mean it’s cool to win an OSCAR but not at the price of integrity…Halle berry’s win was a blatant slap in the face…and training day has the black man playing a crooked cop…i don’t know about everyone else but I cringed…he acted his ass off don’t get me wrong…but still….and I completely agree..DREAMGIRLS WAS WACK!!! lol but i will say that I love tyler perry movies…so much of what he depicts in his films does relate to where i’m from and how i grew up and it’s nice to finally see that portrayed on the big screen….but i think the debate over his movies also deals with the intent and purpose of movies…for me TP serves a comical purpose…i don’t think it is his intention in his movies to educate the world about black people or to help advance the race…he is simply providing and outlet of entertainment for some black people…to take it as anything more than that is foolish IMO….

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