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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

This N' That

Okay....the last "this and that" I thought may have been my last on Blogger, but I haven't decided on a new platform, but it is definitely coming.

I have a lot I want to say today, starting off with a lil' blog lovey love.

"Soulbounce" is my new blog crush....the editors over there, Novaslim (whose blog "Novaslim" was one of the first ones I read on the regular), Butta, and Ill Mami not only have great blogger names, they are funny, insightful, crazy intelligent, and have big love for REAL and GOOD music. Past and present. You won't find no "crank dat" over there. They also have some silly insights on current black music culture. Two thumbs up....check my folkses out.

Ruby Dee was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. Reader Lance called this one in the comments when I talked about Ruby Dee's B'Day.

The fact that she was off the hook for 3 minutes does not warrant Oscar material to me. But to be fair, she is not the first or the last to be honored for a minuscule appearance. There have been a few non-black performances where practically a cameo was nominated. I don't agree with this, but this is one reason I am not an Oscar pomp and circumstance fan. Good luck to her just the same.

Speaking of foreshadowing comments, I was looking at something in my archives the other day and saw this comment. It is from July, and right now it is very, very interesting and telling. It is from "anonymous". I will post it as is, unedited:

"Listen all Tracey Edmonds and her Family are very RACIST towards Black people like us, they have always been. The mother Jackie McQuarn raised them in a white area and taught them to use their own people to benefit. I know people who have worked for her and say that her and her brother (Michael McQuarn) sit in their offices and laugh and talk stuff about our people! Soul Food was just a lucky come up for this RACIST family not to include Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds.These people even screw their own at The Edmonds Tower....So very SAD this woman is going from one RICH man to another on the advise of her Mother and Brother."

From IW: Interesting. Btw, notice anything different from the 1st picture to the 2nd? (besides "husbands")

Reader and blogger Qadree commented on my dismay with the new "magical negro" trend:

"I don't know if I would call this a new trend. Hollywood always updates the archetypes to keep them relevant, but this particular archetype was born along with the rest of them in the days leading up to "The Birth of a Nation". I guess what your referring to could be called the newest wave or variant of the violent/dark archetype, often referred to as the "brutal black buck".

There are many books that breakdown the archetypes, but I prefer Black Manhood on the Silent Screen, by Gerald R Butters.

Many other people seem to prefer the books by Donald Bogle and Thomas Cripps.

Another good book that looks more at the trends surrounding the archetypes and includes some very good research on film criticism from black film critics is Returning the Gaze: A Genealogy of Black Film Criticism, 1909-1949, by Anna Everett.

As far as creating change goes, my biggest emphasis right now is supporting the independent filmmakers and finding ways to make certain ideas common knowledge.

The way I see it there is a hierarchy of knowledge when it comes to cinema. At the top are the scholars and critics, followed by reviewers and people like myself who admire the scholars level of knowledge and want to either be critics, filmmakers, or both. Beneath this is a whole range of people from hobbyists on down to those that just want to be entertained.

I mention this because I think it's important to have outlets at each level where people who are interested can go to learn. If this doesn't happen I wouldn't expect the quality of cinema to get any better because there won't be anything to fuel it once it reaches a certain level. I'm going to start posting to my blog again next Monday, the goal being more critical discourse with an emphasis on black cinema, and I don't expect people who just want entertainment to get much out of it."

From IW: This is interesting to me cause I didn't know about the archetype of "brutal black buck"...only in theory. But to me this new trend is probably a cross blend of the 2 archetypes of "magical negro" and "brutal black buck" as the purpose of these black men in these films (the ones I spoke of) is solely to teach these white men about life and to further the white dude's journey, not theirs (the "bucks/magical negroes"). The new twist is that they teach in a way that is hostile, and not completely subservient, but they are still very secondary to the main white character. I still think it is an emerging archetype we should watch closely.....and I definitely agree with supporting independent black film as much as humanly possible.

From the Big Ideas blog from the Ebony/Jet website (very informative in a easy to digest way) is news of the "Blogging While Brown" conference, that btw, I am very much looking forward to:

The organizers of the first Blogging While Brown Conference has announced that registration is now open. I’ll say it simply, this is a very important cultural milestone. If you blog, go. If you want to blog, go. if you care about Black folks’ place in this new digital universe –go.
Here’s a quote from their release:

“The first international conference for bloggers of color, the Blogging While Brown Conference will be three days of innovative panels, instructional seminars, and networking events. Blogging While Brown was formed in response to widespread dissatisfaction with the lack of diversity at some of the largest blogging conferences. Bloggers of color are excited about a conference, for, by and about them and look forward to moving beyond a single panel or discussion focusing on diversity typically featured at other blogging conferences.”This year’s event will include workshops, seminars, panels, demonstrations, and small group discussions. The workshops are categorized in three tracks related to:

-News, politics, and social justice

-The business of blogging (including technology issues)

-Entertainment, gossip, and lifestyle.

The registration deadline is March 15, 2008. Register HERE.

The film festival I talked about the other day, Spaghetti Junction Urban Film Festival in Atlanta, has a pre-fest screening on Monday, January 28. Try to make it...I already told you Aunt Viv was in it, but so are Patti LaBelle, Lou Gossett, Roger G. Smith, and Leon....y'all know you like that "Five Heartbeats" flashback. To find out more, click here.

I said a couple weeks ago I was gonna start featuring directors and actors that needed some exposure and deservedly so. As you probably know by now I am a bit of a slacker...but I'm workin' on it. First up tomorrow is Carl Gilliard, and I think he has some great advice for up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters....check back tomorrow for his interview.

And finally, in non-Black Cinema news, a peaceful journey to Heath Ledger.....he used to live near me when I was in Brooklyn for a couple of months in 2006. He died today at 28 of a drug overdose, and tho unrelated to Black Film, I want to pay my respects.



MsMarvalus said...

Tracey bought her some boobage from pic 1 to pic 2...

So sad to hear about Heath Ledger...even though he was only in Monster's Ball for about 10 minutes, his performance was powerful and dark and downright jump out the screen real...and say what you will about Brokeback Mountain, his performance in that movie was exceptional...

justjudith said...

i liked heath, so that's bad news. my best to his family.

and wow, tracey is a trip. i seriously would like to know what's up with her fake wedding to eddie murphy...

Sergio said...

msmarvalus is right. of course you're talking about those plastic, silicone stripper tits bolted on her chest that Tracy Edmonds bought for herself between husbands...OOPS I mean her ex-husband and her supposed, fake, for only five minutes, husband. I still don't completely understand what exactly happened with her and Murphy

And you're right as well, what did Rudy Dee do in American Gangster that got her nominated for an Oscar? That is besides slap Denzel Washington? I guess they felt they had to nominate somebody black this year and since the field was pretty slim for Oscar potentials, she was the closest.

Ill Mami said...

On another note, I just wanted to say thanks for bigging us up over on Soul Bounce. It's nice to be noticed :-)

Bohemian Hippie Chick said...

I thought Tracey Edmonds had made a stop at "Boobs R Us".

Wow, Heath Ledger was a good actor. RIP

Submariner said...

Based on your recommendation I just perused Soulbounce and must agree that it presents a rich and varied text. This is the good stuff which is omitted when conservatives emphasize vice at the expense of the virtues of black culture. said...

I didn't get that whole Ruby Dee thing. Tracy bought tits. Heath Ledger was a talented actor who left us too soon. My condolences to his family.

clnmike said...

R.I.P. to Heath. He was a talented actor.

Danielle said...

Damn Heath! Drugs and possible overdose in the same sentence. He was talented. Loved him in Monster's Ball and still haven't seen Brokeback.

Love Ruby to death, but come on. This isn't the `st time the academy has decided to get someone in before they pass away. Clowns.

MrsGrapevine said...

I notice 2 something different. I hope the source is not telling the truth because she has 2 black sons to raise, and that would seem like a conflict of interest.

Thembi said...

Re: Tracy Edmonds

I loved Babyface back in the day, but now that I'm an adult I have reached a key conclusion: Men who texturize their hair, and the women who love them, CANNOT be trusted.

Nicole said...

Happy belated bday...Kind of hard not to see the change in Tracey; she's certainly not hiding them. Although her hair looks oddly the same...Very sad about Heath. I've been looking forward to the Dark Knight - he and Christian Bale make smart movie choices and each have a certain intensity. Seeing it will be bittersweet.

MsMarvalus said...

You can add my name to the crush list of SoulBounce...the site is all that! I'm in instant like!

Regina said...

Tracey took a trip through silicone valley, that looks like a big change!
I'm heading over to soulbounce.

Lance said...

sad to hear about heath ledger's's ironic that many on black radio here in nyc are makin' jokes about it, but when aaliyah passed away in a plane crash and one joke was mentioned by former morning d.j. "star" on hot-97 they were ready to "literally" lynch him, protesting at the radio station for his ouster.

everyone is "assuming" it was suicide but it could have been a complex deal or mixing drugs and alcohol and not allowing one to completely pass/waste out of the body. it was reported that gerald levert passed away on such complexities, drug mix.

on the academy....

i know some are "hatin'" on ruby dee's nomination, but you have to realize. all you need is ONE scene. don't need to be in the movie predominately or the main character, just hit ONE scene on the head right...and it can wow audiences. that scene for me was when mama lucas (mrs. dee) confronted frank lucas (denzel) on the beginning of his downfall with his rich lifestyle. it was something about that scene touch me. maybe it's me personally knowing mothers that have struggled dealing with sons in and out of jail, i don't's just that, that scene touched me.

there have been many oscar nominations when an actor received the nod and was hardly in it. like tom cruise for "magnolia"...briefly in the film for less than like what, 15 mins. judy dench won for best supporting actress for "shakesphere in love" and she was in it for a total of 8 mins!

i would hope that ruby dee wins the oscar and hopefully they will have an impasse on the writer's strike or something to allow the actors, writers, directors, producers and all nominees...get their deserved spotlight.

Kayos said...

Tracey Edmonds is so not black. Tell me what self-respecting black woman marries a man that is dissing his baby mama so disrespectfully and publicly?! That's why he divorced her ass 2 weeks later.

Congrats to Ruby Dee but like you said...the movie itself should have been nominated but hey, it's dog eat black people world.

RIP Heath Ledger. I loved him in movies and he will be missed.

Don said...

Butta is definitely the truth.

Invisible Woman said...

@ms.m: I'm sorry, I know I'll be in LA but I can't put the girls out on display like that...

@jj: I've been hearing, reading some very interesting thigs about the wedding, like how Traci's family had all of these retail endorsement deals surrounding the wedding. I think I might post that today.

@sergio, the black actor and danielle: it probably is a sympathy nom, and might be a sympathy win. She should've had one years ago.

@illmami: your spot is the truth!

Invisible Woman said...

@bhc: lmao at "boobs r us"

@submariner--hey! I'm so glad you liked it--I'm even more glad that you are checking out my spot :-)

@clnmike: I know, sad right?

@mgv: more coming up on them today

@thembi: lol! not the texturized hair!

@nicole: I know, what's up with the hair? Can it move?

@Ms.M--I love Soulbounce--check out the writers' individual blogs too--they are refreshing

@regina: "silicone valley" haha!

Invisible Woman said...

@lance: don't get me wrong, I love Ruby, and I was actually thinking of the Judi Dench thing when I posted about Ruby. But I still think it's not right, especially when the performances in "Before The Devil Knows You're Dead" were so glaringly overlooked. I just don't take the Oscars seriously.

The whole Heath thing is a circus.

@kayos: from what I understand it was strictly business. See my post later today.

@don: agreed!

Butta said...

I've been on vacation and internet-less for the past week+ so I'm just now getting around to reading this, but THANK YOU SO MUCH for the love that you showed SoulBounce! It's always great to connect with likeminded folks about real music. The support is definitely appreciated.

And I see I'm gonna have to add Don to my Christmas gift list this year. I feel so special. :0)