26 February 2009

Madea (Needs To) Go To Jail.....For Life!

I have a major problem with film director Tyler Perry. I'll say that Tyler Perry is like Lil Wayne in the movie game. He's well-liked, gives the (mass) people what they want to see, and makes a lot of money while doing it. It should be hard to find a fault on the powerful Black man in the name of Cinema, right? Wrong. In the same vein of what makes him 'so popular', he is also an integral part to the support of Blacks continuing to make excuses for their shortcomings and take responsibility for their actions, inaction, and future. He is a sore in our culture, opting to entertain by exploiting the stereotypes of our race for comedic relief, subliminally bringing to light what is wrong with our culture but providing little to no viable alternatives to such a problem, and on top of everything else...he just plain sucks.

Last weekend, I went to see Tyler Perry's Madea Goes to Jail. I've never liked any of the Madea plays and most of his movies were just doing too much for my tastes, namely because of his penchant for broadcasting the stereotypes of Blacks and blanketing them, making them much bigger and 'general' than they really are. I have a problem with that. A big problem. However, I went to see it anyway because my homies wanted to see it and I didn't want to be the odd one out. Plus the tickets were only six bucks so I figured, "why not?"*

I knew this film would be full of fuckery to the tenth power when not only was it the usual run-of-the-mill stereotypical "from Down South" Blacks speaking in broken English, partying with the "big red cup", and ultimately making a mockery of our culture by talking loud for no reason and being uncooperative. Sure enough, these stereotypes exist. But the whole film? I shook my head when everyone laughed at the stereotypes. I just didnt find it funny.

It's important to embrace our culture and 'be real', of course. My problem lies mainly with his character development in all of the works he's done with the exception of "Why Did I Get Married" and "A Family That Preys" because in those films, his characters were variant, diverse, and painted a more wholistic picture of our culture, marking our general social struggles but still not losing sight of the battle we as a culture face and also took note that...there ARE successful Black people in the world that work legally, aren't ignorant and uneducated, have families, and take responsiblity for their actions.

It's like Perry is doing this on purpose though. It's one thing to have that one film or two exploiting your race for comedic relief...and an entirely different animal altogether to have a portfolio of buffoonery as your main source of income. I can't knock him because he's made it work for him and he's now a millionaire...but damn all that! I can knock him for disrespecting our race time and time again!

I do wonder though: Do Whites see us like this? Do they 'blanket' us and think we're all this ridiculous? That we're all jokers with no goals and just getting by with Life? The theatre I was in was packed with Whites taking up about 85% of the seating. I understand that the movie is a comedy but I saw so much deeper than all that and I was heartbroken by what I saw....generally. We aren't all like that. See the Black attorneys in the film? We can be like that too (though I felt like he should have developed more into the story of those successful Blacks) and it isnt an anomaly. We're successful, driven, educated, and happy. Damn you, Tyler Perry!!!

Take all of these issues I had with the character development out and let's focus on how the film was completely underdeveloped. On one hand we had Madea on the brink of going to jail and profusely refusing help, by which case she ultimately loses her cool in a very extravagant (read: EXTRA!) way and is eventually jailed (no shocker there; we knew she was going to jail by the title alone). On the other hand, we have Candy, played by Keysha Knight-Pulliam (aka: Rudy from the Cosby Show) who is a prostitute that is sentenced to jail for an unreasonable amount of time because she is friends with an attorney who is engaged to a very jealous and outright ridiculously unfair and selfish woman to whom he works with. The fiance intentionally dallies with Candy's legal papers and makes her go to jail so that her and her husband-to-be can live their lives without Candy's interrupting. Basically, the movie was two stories in one film. It was obvious.

And even though it's titled, "Madea Goes to Jail", I personally favored the latter story.

I felt like the connection between the two scenarios should have been much more clear and well...developed. Instead, Perry waited until near the end of the film to bring the two (Madea and Candy) together and when he did, it was still clear that this was two movies in one.

Bad character development + Grossly underdeveloped plot + A few laughs here and there =

Ms_ Slim rolling her eyes and sitting at the film laughing sparingly instead of in a rukus like everyone else. I just saw so many errors and couldn't get past it for the sake of mere comedic relief.

(Gotta admit: The Madea and Dr. Phil scene was the funniest scene in the whole film)

Boo, TP, BOOOO!!!


*- I was nowhere near Chicago last weekend. Movie tickets in Chicago are anywhere from 9 bucks a ticket to 11 bucks downtown, with matinee being 7.50. Where I was, tickets for adults were only 6 bucks. If I was in Chicago and had to pay for my own ticket (or even if I didnt pay for it), I wouldnt have wasted any time, energy, or money seeing the film for 9 to 11 bucks. It isnt worth it AT ALL...in my opinion, of course :)

25 February 2009

The Spike Lee Hater, Part 2 (final)

Background: This is the relevant IM thread from yesterday. We got on the subject of Spike Lee because we were discussing the outing I was to go on later on that night (last night) and I mentioned to him how I was going to go see The International with Clive Owen. For me, Clive Owen is most memorable for Inside Man, a Spike Lee movie. From there went this:

Ms_Slim: Have u seen Inside Man?

Spike Lee Hater: yup

Ms_Slim: Thats easily one of my fav films. I love Spike Lee. And I love him more that he isn’t Tyler Perry.

Spike Lee Hater: That might be the only Spike movie I can sit thru

Ms_Slim: (shocked face) …and why's that?!?!

SLH: I think other than Crooklyn, I never enjoyed the stories.

Ms_Slim: Those are fighting words, son. I mean not even Malcolm X!

…or even....even....EVEN Do the Right Thing?! …or Jungle Fever? I don’t know, man...I’m too blown away by that statement.

SLH: Documentaries are different, nothing to script as far as plots go. I enjoyed X

Do the Right Thing, School Daze--I just don't think if I had kids I'd want them watching them. There's nothing positive about them in my eye

Ms_Slim: Maaaaaaaaaaaan. I swear I never ever expected you to say that. You’re a predictable guy. No surprise about you at all. But that right there? That shocked me and I had to get up for a sec.

SLH: I'm not gonna lie, a big part of me is not a fan of black folks and Spike's one of the reasons

Ms_Slim: Not even Bamboozled though? Come ON man!!! I grew up on Spike Lee movies and Hip Hop so I couldn’t see any part of my childhood without those elements really.

SLH: Bamboozled... one of the worst pieces of cinema I've ever sat thru. It took about 5 years to stomach thru actually watching it.

Ms_Slim: OMG! I’m having a hard time with that statement. Why don’t u like Spike? I mean he isn’t like Tyler perry, who brings forth stereotypes to a comical screen much like Bojangles. Spike Lee educates. I’m totally outdone.

SLH: Tyler Perry itches my soul somethin’ awful also, but they're two different itches

Ms_Slim: There are a lot of things people didn’t/don’t know about that he brings to screen and opens eyes to them. See: Do the Right Thing…or Jungle Fever…and especially Bamboozled. Wow.

SLH: I suppose I just choose to get my education elsewhere. I won't knock anyone who follows any of the movies. They just didn't speak to me

Ms_Slim: I mean i can understand them not speakin to you (I’m basically telling him to respect the craft and acknowledge the greatness regardless), but you said you’re not a fan of black folk, which I knew, but then u said that Spike is one reason why…and I don’t get that, considering he's an educator.

SLH: As for being an educator, everyone is an educator to someone. Spike just happens to not be an educator to me

Ms_Slim: okay…..(a bit confused)…fair enough....I guess

SLH: I feel he pushes an empty point--stand up and say something--fight it--don't take it sitting down!

...Someone asks 'what are we fighting?' Nobody knows. Same with certain music of that era

“Fight the power!”

What power?

Why are we fighting?

Ms_Slim: WOW

SLH: Same with poetry. If it's not telling me anything substantial, I’d rather not bother with it

Ms_Slim: Ahhhhhh….

SLH: Same with reading books

Ms_Slim: Stop! Stop! Stop!

SLH: If I'm not gaining anything...I have to put it down

Ms_Slim: I’m gonna jump through the computer and wring a certain 18 inch neck for all this blasphemy! Now you’re on POETRY?!

SLH: I'll easily say I learned more from the Lion King than any Spike Lee movie

Ms_Slim: Are u aware of who you’re typing to? lol

SLH: I learned more from Forrest Gump than any Spike Lee movie. There's ways to tell a story so you instill lessons in it... and there's way to put out a film that you feel is deep. Spike Lee puts out what he feels is deep (I saw that point. One point for the SLH!) Unfortunately, he and I share a different level of depth apparently (meh)

Ms_Slim: I’m sorry. I had to leave the screen for a second because you were talking from the crevice on the side of your neck. ah well :) (Our insults are said jokingly)

SLH: Understandable.

Ms_Slim: I feel so violated right now

SLH: Male coworkers staring at you too hard?

Ms_Slim: I’m guessing you have a problem with Maya Angelou too (He said ‘same with poetry’, so…)

SLH: She's never done anything to move me, but I did hear her speak

Ms_Slim: (referencing the ‘male coworkers’ statement).....considering there isnt a drop of testosterone on board, I'm gonna have to go with no

SLH: She's a very moving speaker

Ms_Slim: So she HAS done something to move you!

SLH: I was seated at the time

Ms_Slim: LMAO. Congrats, [SLH]. You prompted a blog from me! :)

** Now I'll admit that after his explanation, I saw his side of things. He made a lot of sense. The conversation continued and we expanded into the dynamics of music of the 90s (namely: Public Enemy, McLyte, Sister Soldja, and KRS-1). We even discussed the influence that music had on the Black race in the 90s (his argument saying that it stemmed from the 80s--which I agree with). We discussed Forrest Gump and its lessons as well as the Black mentality and how (as a race--collectively) our race has slacked on the part of taking responsibility for our own destiny, downfalls, and life in general and have resorted to blaming "The Man" for the bulk of our shortcomings. We also discussed psychology, the church, and the importance of parents in a child's life. All of this...spawned from the Spike Lee discussion...and he doesn't see Spike's depth. HA!

24 February 2009

The Spike Lee Hater, Part 1

"Spike Lee itches my soul. Tyler Perry itches my soul something awful also" -The Spike Lee Hater

Normally, I wouldn't get up in arms over this. Heck, I try to respect everyone's opinion, no matter how ridiculous it may come off in my head. But this--this statement took the cake on all ridiculous opinions made. It really did.

As if that weren't enough, TSLH* continues with:

"Bamboozled...one of the worst pieces of cinema I've ever sat through. It took about 5 years to stomach through watching it."

I am genuinely outdone. Like--mouth hanging open in complete confusion and perplexity FLOORED! What can any man do to be put in (nearly) the same vein as Tyler Perry?!



*TSLH- The Spike Lee Hater

20 February 2009

Insomniac Ramblings Part 193

It's 5am right now.

This is my third (and possibly last) time getting up during the night for the day.

Sleeping in quick and very uneven bursts. Clearly Insomnia has made a Comeback. Been in the works for the last several weeks.

Now its feet are planted firmly on my soul for the time being, holding me captive for.....I can't be sure how long. I never am. It rules, not I.

Right now though, I'm packing and preparing for a much-needed weekend vacay from it all. I plan to de-stress, of course. And hopefully kick Insomnia back to where it came from.

On second thought, maybe that last part of what I expect from my weekend getaway is asking too much?

I need my Pillow. Dammit.

19 February 2009

Someone Tell Me This Isnt Real...

I'm having a real hard time with this.

Someone please tell me that this is a photoshopped pic.

PS; I am in no way a "fan" of Chris Brown's music like that at all. I am having a hard time with this because if this pic is the real pic, the abuse is solidified. And my heart will have just broken a little.

Is ALL Art Up For Interpretation?

Here we go again...smh

Here's the cartoon that was published in the New York Post the other day that's been going around the intrawebs and blogosphere ever since it hit the newsstands.

And as soon as Al Sharpton sees this and interprets what many folk see as a pick at President Obama, folk seem to have gotten up in arms arguing that Sharpton is an opportunist and defending this foolishness saying that its a pick at Congress. Though I can understand both sides, this doesnt excuse the cartoon in the least. Surely enough, the cartoonist knew what he was doing to construct something that could swing "both ways".

Is it real art because it's 'so vague' in what it's really saying? Or is the artist really ignorant to what the age-old monkey/black person stereotype is and the fact that racism is still alive and well to begin with? Is all art up for interpretatioiin? With this, I think not...but that's just my opinion, of course.

16 February 2009

Just Some Rambling...

...bear with me.

I’ve had a lot on my mind lately. A lot more than usually. I’ve been ‘absent’, ‘missing’. I disappeared quiet as a church mouse and couldn’t be found by neither Facebook, MySpace, Twitter (don’t have a Twitter and don’t really see a point in getting one; I’m on my anti-Twitter roll right now. I will not cave!), Gmail, any of my emails, phone call, text, or even a house visit. I was just….gone.

And many folk took notice. One even got angry with the act I pulled…even though they were the only ones that actually knew why I decided to dip out on the world for a little over a week in the first place.

Fact is though, I just needed to isolate myself for a little while. Sort through some things by becoming a hermit of sorts, gather myself, and pretty much ‘start anew’ in a sense. I promised myself that I wouldn’t come back from my hiding place until I felt like a ‘new me’ and all the thoughts that have been weighing in on me for quite some time had simmered at least a bit.

And here I am. I’m still a little ‘missing’ but not as explicitly as before. I’m working on it….so work with me.

I can’t say that said thoughts have ‘simmered’ but in taking a new direction with Life, I’ve learned (while in my personal realm) that everything is taken with the ‘one day at a time’ mindset. I can’t do everything at once, but I can continue to live and live I shall do.

To those that have inquired about me, if I haven’t already contacted you or even if you inquired by way of a mutual friend that asked me themselves what the Hell was up with me, thank you for your concern. I am okay. Just been on a whole new level of ‘doing me’ lately. Side note: I have been known to disappear out of the blue if I don’t want to be bothered; this is just the first time that I’ve done it in such a restricted fashion and also the first time I’ve done it for this long. I will check emails a little later.

Continuing on…

Over this time, though, I haven’t stopped writing at all. I’ve written several posts…which shall get posted soon.

I miss one of my friends and they really need to call me soon. Or something.

My Valentine weekend was cool. Went to the movies and out to eat, visited some friends, and witnessed (by way of one of my best friends’ cell phone) a proposal over the span of both Saturday and Sunday. Pretty solid weekend. How was yours?

I’ve also been shopping to my heart’s discontent. Online, in the mall, at strip malls, everywhere. It’s been pretty ridiculous. That’s another blog I’ll share soon though.

The ChRihanna situation has been on my mind as well and I wrote on it. But I won’t be posting that rant. Why? Well because everyone has written on it and no one (nope not even the most popular bloggers of the Free World) know the whole situation. Though I’ve been guilty of it several times, I hate writing about something for which I have extremely little (factual) information on and then having to add a “well this is just based off what I’ve been reading from the media” as a disclaimer. Ugh. However, I will say this (and this does not just go for Chris & Rihanna but for anyone involved in domestic violence…something I know about from personal experience):

Domestic violence is not okay in any form…..if a man hits a woman for no reason, he is a coward and should definitely be punished. The same rule applies to women too, however. I feel like if a woman has the balls to hit a man like she’s a man, she doesn’t get a pass simply because she is a female. (Females can, in fact, hurt a male physically) If she hit him like she wanted to fight, she should be braced for said fight to take place. Period. Also anyone involved in a violent relationship should seek professional help immediately…both parties, not just the abuser.

I’ve been getting emails from unrecognizable gmail accounts. When curiosity kills the cat and I check said email, I find that it’s spam from MySpace. Here is one:

Note: The address that this came from was: JamarKingQW@gmail.com with the Subject Line saying, “You still interested in talking?”

Here is the message:

Have not heard from you in awhile. You still single? I am back in the
dating game.
I setup a new profile on a new site. If you are still intrested you should look me up
my MSN is jane.abernathy2185@hotmail.com
Hope to hear from you soon

  1. I have not been on MySpace in Lord knows how long. The only reason I signed onto the sight in the past several months was to check my messages and because I didn’t know how to do video blogs in my blog on here. So I’d do them on MySpace and instead of hitting ‘Post’, I’d just copy and paste the blog onto blogger. Now that I know how to do them, I haven’t signed on at all. It’s been way over a week since I learned….

  1. This ‘person’ used an email address that clearly makes it look like this is from a male (by the way: I have no clue who a ‘Jamar King’ is in the first place). Then the body of the email directs me to a whole different email address which leads me to believe that this is from a woman. Hmmm……no thanks. I’m straight. Literally. Figuratively. And definitely sexually.

  1. Did MySpace really have to resort to this? I know they have been losing the battle to Facebook and Twitter but…..sigh…(and yes I know this is from MySpace because Ive gotten several other messages of this exact same format and they say, “…..saw your profile on MySpace” or something to that effect. (my profile is private, by the way). This was just the very last one I’ve gotten in my yahoo inbox.

Anyway, I think I'm coming down with something and I can't stop sneezing. Doesn't feel too hot.

I think that’s it.

For now.


03 February 2009

When It Hurts...

When It Hurts....

What a night I’m having. Blah.

Anyway…Ahhh…I heard this song for the umpteenth time today on the way home from work and it wasn’t until today that it actually made me think on a grander scale than, “yea…he’s right”.

This song is personal for me for a couple reasons but the most notable—the one I’d share is how the song made me think of my ex.

I make reference to my ex every now and again. You see, my ex and I split a while ago, tried for a year and a half to repair, realized it wouldn’t work and here we are. Apart. All good on my end. On his…..well that isn’t really what’s important lol…

The song, “When It Hurts” is talking about and suggesting giving the definition of love another meaning of sorts. So many people look at their relationship, see how great it’s going and it’s “I’m in love”…then if something unexpected happens and the happiness fades and is replaced with pain, then it’s “forget him/her” and “it’s over”. The song is asking that when things are going bad (when it hurts), you still have that same passion…that same desire for your mate. When it hurts, you’re still there. When it hurts, you don’t cash in the chips so quickly but rather you work on it—work through it—and get through the bad patches together. When it hurts…

But what if it’s hurting all so badly all too often? Is that song still relevant? Is it fair to have a breaking point and put ‘love’ aside and favor personal sanity?

My ex and I went through a lot of things in our relationship. We were together for some years and we ultimately grew up and apart from one another. But what really drove us to stop trying to work things out was the fact that we kept playing our version of “When It Hurts” in our heads throughout the duration of our relationship until it was the only song that could describe what we were.

All intimate relationships have their ups and downs, their smooth roads and rough patches, and the days you love versus the days you…”meh, love”, but if the bad starts to outweigh the good and if that pain mounts itself onto your soul until you see no more blue skies but rather a steam of dark clouds, gray skies, and terrible weather filled with the worst storms days can buy, and “When It Hurts” becomes the prime definition of your relationship rather than, “When In Love”…are you cruel for leaving? Heartless, even?

Everyone deserves their dose of intimate happiness and love shouldn’t hurt more than it feels good.

A Great Day

Have you ever had one of those awesomely awesome days that had no real reason for being super awesome…it just was? That was my day yesterday. Yesterday was a super good day. Mood stayed good all day long, the weather wasn’t on it’s period and the sun shone for much of the day, even though it’s still cold outside, and everything from beginning to end ran pretty smoothly.

Yesterday was a great day.

Now don’t get me wrong, there were a few things that tried to topple my good day and make my good day waver a bit in its goodness. But yesterday, I let not one thing phase me to the point of risking my sanity. A great day indeed.

I’m not saying that I usually have bad days (because I certainly don’t) but usually if something riles me, while it won’t really affect the inner workings of my day, at the very least, my mood may change a little (even if just for a few seconds) in spite of it all. But yesterday, some things tried to come through and ZZZAAAPP!!! It was like I was immune to it all. I was impressed! And usually if nothing even comes to disrupt my day, it just becomes a regular, mediocre day. I don’t know what made yesterday so special but….yesterday was one of the best days I’ve had in quite some time.

Maybe it was something I ate. That had to be it….


Just thought I’d share. How is your day going so far?


PS; I'd put Ice Cube's "It Was A Good Day" video up..but it seems wildly inappropriate LOL. Click that link if you want to see it though :)

02 February 2009

Monday Blog Pimpage...

Monday Blog Pimpage…

I’ve got nothing but I want to post something. I’m also in a good mood so…here goes: I’ve come across some pretty good blogs lately and I must share. Enjoy:

VerbFashion- Her words are captivating…when she posts lol. In an effort to get her to post a bit more frequently, I’m trying to bring the readers to her. Check her out. She’s dope.

Robin Monique- She changed her site and went from The Confessions of a Skinny Black Girl to…Robin Monique. She’s real and shares it all in an effort to reach the masses and touch and inspire people through her words. Check her out.

Earthquakes for Snowflakes- This girl, Asia Kismet, is an artist in every sense of the word. Her blogs are usually pretty short but they have a way of making you love her style of writing. Or at least pause and think of what she’s written…and then love it, lol. Again, check her out. She’s dope as well.

Music That Moves Me- My homie for life, Stef does music blogs on videos that have had an effect on him in some way. Really good choices; you won't be disappointed.

Okay that’s all I’ve got.

Happy Monday everyone,