For Colored Girls an adaption of the acclaimed play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf, debuted with an impressive 20 million dollars this weekend. I’ve heard females rave about how good it was, and critics throw dirt all over it, dismissing it as a poorly adapted melodramatic piece of junk. Usually I wouldn’t care, I have no love for Tyler Perry as you can tell from the last time I blogged about him, but this is where I come to his defense… well not his defense, but those who go see his movies.
I read a comment on a board this morning that had this to say “I thought Mastermind would push 70 million, oh and I see African Americans still have no taste in films with Tyler Perry’s newest coming in third.” African Americans have no taste in movies? Really? The only person allowed to make those kinds of generalized comments is me. I feel very insulted that this guy or girl (I assume they are non-Black) assumes that just because Tyler Perry movies do well, it’s a reflection on every Black person’s taste. To that anonymous poster I say FUCK YOU.
“Tyler Perry has Tyler Perried the hell out of this thing.” – Eric Snider of Cinematical
“Tyler Perry is the most influential African-American director since Spike Lee, and certainly the most financially successful ever, none of which can disguise that he’s a terrible filmmaker.” – Corey Hall of Metro
“For Colored Girls feels like the cinematic equivalent to putting a garish reproduction of the Sistine Chapel on the ceiling of your McMansion and calling it art.” – Mary Pols of Time Magazine
I get it. The movie isn’t good. But not all films are meant to be great, they’re meant to make money. I haven’t seen the movie, nor do I ever plan on laying eyes on it after watching that horrible trailer, but I’m sure the messages in the film speak to women who may be able to relate with those characters. Even if it’s not perfect, it’s personal, and how many times do Black people get to see films that depict our struggles in general? For that fact alone I give For Colored Girls a pass.
But to look at it from the other side, some Black people do enjoy horrible movies. I saw this girl tweet that The Social Network was wack then had the audacity to praise Saw 3D. No, this bitch isn’t just some Lee Harvey Oswald style “lone” nut, she does represent a percentage of simpletons who get bored with “words that make you think” and excited by scary sound effects. I just want to go up to girls like that give them a rock tied to a cup and say, “it’s okay sweetie, just try and get that rock into the cup” and watch them be entertained for hours. But that’s not all Black people. I have plenty of friends who… well actually most of my Black friends only see Will Ferrell movies, but I’m sure there are people out there just like me who appreciate and seek out fine cinema.
I have come to accept those people who can’t tell a plot hole from an asshole because there is nothing I can say that will make them think that Inglorious Bastards is better than Love and Basketball or that How High isn’t an acceptable answer when someone asks you to name your favorite movie. They like what they like, and that’s their prerogative. It just burns me up that people are judging all Black people based on the performance of a Tyler Perry movie.
A white person coming up and randomly asking me “so that Tyler Perry movie did well” is the equivalent of them saying “So KFC has a new sale”. While I’m certain that no one will ever ask me that, I’m sure that somewhere in this great country of ours, some goofy office worker will try to chit chat with Shawna “the black secretary” in the break room and make that exact comment. Because to them we all like Tyler Perry.