Every single time a movie with an all black cast is released all hell breaks loose on the internet. I cannot believe the amount of racist comments I have read and the low rating scores on various internet websites for the new film “This Christmas”. Well at the end of the day all Hollywood cares about is profit. “This Christmas” production budget was only $13 million the movie is already a hit and I hope it makes a lot of green. The good news for this film “This Christmas” is the box office is actually very good. I just checked www.boxofficemojo.com and the movie is actually doing quite well it has already made $8 million dollars in just two days and that doesn’t even include weekend box office numbers. Why is it so hard for some people to understand that black people we want to see movies about ourselves? I swear most Hollywood movies tend to have blacks as marginal characters in the background.
“This Christmas” is about a black middle class family in Los Angeles Loretta Devine is the mother, it also stars Regina King, Delroy Lindo, Chris Brown, and Sharon Leal. Regina King is playing “against” type in this movie she plays a submissive housewife with a cheating husband and she never went to college. Its nice to see Regina take on this role she was also amazing in “Ray” a few years back.
I think “maybe” Hollywood has finally realized that there is a lucrative black market that has been consistently ignored for years. I certainly hope this isn’t some kind of “deja vu” like ten years ago when “Waiting To Exhale”, “Soul Food”, and “The Best Man” were so successful at the box office in the 1990s. Even though those black films were successful at the box office Hollywood didn’t take the “hint” that if they make movies with an all black cast these films “can” make money. Unfortunately, after the 1990s ended there were a lot of crappy date movies, stereotypical comedies that emerged this decade but it does look as though things are back on track. I think the next step of course is to move beyond the whole black “family comedy/drama” ensemble films to more serious and complex material.
However, I honestly believe black films like “This Christmas” are so important because these films provide a different side to black life that often is ignored by Hollywood and that’s the black middle class. Sometimes people just want to be “entertained” at the movie theatre we don’t want a “lecture”, or “preached to” we just want to escape our hectic lives and breathe for a moment. I think the black experience needs to develop and now move into other areas as well. I would love to see more science fiction movies with black leads, or black detective movies with black women in the lead. I think that would be interesting. If Hollywood would just realize that if the script is well written, they find the talented black actors, and they market the movie right it will find an audience.
Update: According to www.boxofficemojo.com “This Christmas” is the number two movie in North America grossing over $27 million dollars.