An artificial face, for an offensively artificial character, in an offensively artificial movie.
How dare the makers of For Coloured Girls bring Nina Simone into their stinkie kankatang? Tyler Perry has hit rock bottom here with this offensive crap. Here are the reasons why:
1. I know it's based on the 1975 "choreopoem" For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf by Ntozake Shange, but since when have we reverted to the practice of calling black people "coloured"?
2. Nothing in this film is inherently unique to black people. Perry's adaptation has turned something that might work on stage into something quite offensive. In fact, on screen, it all comes across as a re-reinforcement of black stereotypes: black preacher woman, black slutty woman, black bitter woman, black indie woman, black abusive husband, black virile rapist man, black criminals...and on and on, with dialogue that--when it veers from the original poetry of the play--is itself a stereotype. The irony is that Perry's target audience is mainly black people everywhere. The movie should have been called: For People of Every Race Willing to Fork Out Money For This Offensive Crap.
3. Homophobia. This one needs some explaining.
Once upon a time, when Tyler Perry first broke out, he was seen as an aberration. Here was a black man who appeared in his own movies in drag. Remember Medea anyone? Black man playing a grandma. Ha. Ha. How wonderfully liberal! some thought.
Then the films happened to us. One by one they horrified us after his first big smash Diary of a Mad Black Woman--which incidentally had nothing to do with blackness or insanity.
For instance he cast Janet Jackson repeatedly in a series of forgettable movies that gave us a glimpse of his homophobic streak. Film after film, he presented black married male characters living straight lives who were actually gay. These characters were all treated as freaks: aberrations. For two movies in a row (Why Did I Get Married and Why Did I Get Married 2) Jackson played a woman in a relationship with a closeted gay man. Now, for yet a third time, Perry casts Jackson to do the same thing this time with characters not in the original play who are now specifically inserted by Perry to give Jackson yet another bite at the cherry (pun intended).
As you might expect, once more the black closeted man who is unable to come to terms with his sexuality is demonised: he did it all to hurt the woman and not because he was unable to come to terms with his identity. This time around, though, Perry turns up the offensiveness by adding another offensive stereotype involving HIV and gay people.
Janet Jackson's character coughs in scene after scene during the movie, then finds out that she is HIV positive. Suddenly, after years of being in a relationship and seeing her husband lust after other men, she realises her husband is sleeping with men. How so, you wonder? Why naturally because she has HIV and got it from him and he could have only gotten it from another gay man as we all know HIV is a gay disease.
The only disease here is Tyler Perry.
4. What is with the plastic surgery Janet? This is what she used to look like when the surgery was only mild:
Apparently not pleased with her black features, she now finds herself in a black movie in which her character bashes her husband for being true to himself by admitting his sexuality. The offensiveness is mind-boggling. People should boycott Jackson just because of the alarming message her face (see poster at top of post) now sends. I mean Michael overdid it too, but at least his music was good.
5. The disgraceful treatment of Nina Simone's 'Four Women'.
The trailer for the film has the song performed as a cover and takes the raw (supposedly 'un-commercial') elements of the original out. By the time the movie ends and the credits begin to role, Nina's version is played. For a moment you just want to forget the crap you just watched and listen to Nina. Then, the inferior cover version comes on! Bye bye Nina. The disgrace. It's a shame so many good actors are in this twaddle.
Nina Simone's 'Four Women':
The trailer for For Colored Girls: